Naval Poetry

dunkers

War Hero
Following on from Salty's poems... do you have any nautical poems you like?

I have a book of them called "Sea Verse", here are a few I like.

THE YARN OF THE NANCY BELL

'Twas on the shores that round our coast
From Deal to Ramsgate span,
That I found alone on a piece of stone
An elderly naval man.

His hair was weedy, his beard was long,
And weedy and long was he,
And I heard this wight on the shore recite,
In a singular minor key:

"Oh, I am a cook and a captain bold,
And the mate of the Nancy brig,
And a bo'sun tight, and a midshipmite,
And the crew of the captain's gig."

And he shook his fists and he tore his hair,
Till I really felt afraid,
For I couldn't help thinking the man had been drinking,
And so I simply said:

"O, elderly man, it's little I know
Of the duties of men of the sea,
But I'll eat my hand if I understand
How you can possibly be

"At once a cook, and a captain bold,
And the mate of the Nancy brig,
And a bo'sun tight, and a midshipmite,
And the crew of the captain's gig."

Then he gave a hitch to his trousers, which
Is a trick all seamen larn,
And having got rid of a thumping quid,
He spun this painful yarn:

"'Twas in the good ship Nancy Bell
That we sailed to the Indian sea,
And there on a reef we come to grief,
Which has often occurred to me.

"And pretty nigh all o' the crew was drowned
(There was seventy-seven o' soul),
And only ten of the Nancy's men
Said 'Here!' to the muster-roll.

"There was me and the cook and the captain bold,
And the mate of the Nancy brig
And the bo'sun tight, and a midshipmite,
And the crew of the captain's gig.

"For a month we'd neither wittles nor drink,
Till a-hungry we did feel,
So we drawed a lot, and accordin' shot
The captain for our meal.

"The next lot fell to the Nancy's mate,
And a delicate dish he made;
Then our appetite with the midshipmite
We seven survivors stayed.

"And then we murdered the bo'sun tight,
And he much resembled pig,
Then we wittled free, did the cook and me,
On the crew of the captain's gig.

"Then only the cook and me was left,
And the delicate question, 'Which
Of us two goes to the kettle?' arose
And we argued it out as sich.

"For I loved that cook as a brother, I did,
And the cook he worshipped me;
But we'd both be blowed if we'd either be stowed
In the other chap's hold, you see.

"'I'll be eat if you dines off me,' says Tom,
'Yes, that,' says I, 'you'll be,' --
'I'm boiled if I die, my friend,' quoth I,
And 'Exactly so,' quoth he.

"Says he, 'Dear James, to murder me
Were a foolish thing to do,
For don't you see that you can't cook me,
While I can -- and will -- cook you!'

"So he boils the water, and takes the salt
And the pepper in portions true
(Which he never forgot) and some chopped shalot,
And some sage and parsley too.

"'Come here,' says he, with a proper pride,
Which his smiling features tell,
' 'Twill soothing be if I let you see,
How extremely nice you'll smell.'

"And he stirred it round and round and round,
And he sniffed at the foaming froth;
When I ups with his heels, and smothers his squeals
In the scum of the boiling broth.

"And I eat that cook in a week or less,
And -- as I eating be
The last of his chops, why, I almost drops,
For a wessel in sight I see!

"And I never grin, and I never smile,
And I never larf nor play,
But I sit and croak, and a single joke
I have -- which is to say:

"Oh, I am a cook and a captain bold,
And the mate of the Nancy brig,
And a bo'sun tight, and a midshipmite,
And the crew of the captain's gig!"
 

dunkers

War Hero
These are shorter but a lot more serious (also got these from the book),

The full sea rolls and thunders
In glory and in glee.
O, bury me not in the senseless earth
But in the living sea!

Ay, bury me where it surges
A thousand miles from shore
And in its brotherly unrest
I'll range for evermore.

William Ernest Henley




Break, break, break,
On thy cold gray stones, O Sea!
And I would that my tongue could utter
The thoughts that arise in me.

O well for the fisherman's boy,
That he shouts with his sister at play!
O well for the sailor lad,
That he sings in his boat on the bay!

And the stately ships go on
To their haven under the hill:
But O for the touch of a vanish'd hand,
And the sound of a voice that is still!

Break, break, break,
At the foot of thy crags, O Sea!
But the tender grace of a day that is dead
Will never come back to me.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson
 

SALTY

Midshipman
dunkers said:
These are shorter but a lot more serious (also got these from the book),

The full sea rolls and thunders
In glory and in glee.
O, bury me not in the senseless earth
But in the living sea!

Ay, bury me where it surges
A thousand miles from shore
And in its brotherly unrest
I'll range for evermore.

William Ernest Henley




Great poems Dunkers, loved all three :) Bob

Break, break, break,
On thy cold gray stones, O Sea!
And I would that my tongue could utter
The thoughts that arise in me.

O well for the fisherman's boy,
That he shouts with his sister at play!
O well for the sailor lad,
That he sings in his boat on the bay!

And the stately ships go on
To their haven under the hill:
But O for the touch of a vanish'd hand,
And the sound of a voice that is still!

Break, break, break,
At the foot of thy crags, O Sea!
But the tender grace of a day that is dead
Will never come back to me.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson

 

slim

War Hero
The boy stood on the burning deck
Selling peas a penny a peck
Then along came Montegue
Quick lads, arses to the mast
Until Montegue has past
But Montegue the crafty sod threw the boy a fritter
The boy bent down to pick it up
Whoosh six inches up his ...........

Suggestions for a suitable word to finish the ode on a postcard please
 
slim said:
The boy stood on the burning deck
Selling peas a penny a peck
Then along came Montegue
Quick lads, arses to the mast
Until Montegue has past
But Montegue the crafty sod threw the boy a fritter
The boy bent down to pick it up
Whoosh six inches up his ...........

Suggestions for a suitable word to finish the ode on a postcard please

A Stoker called Montegue? :? :roll:
 

dunkers

War Hero
slim said:
Suggestions for a suitable word to finish the ode on a postcard please

How about "shitter"

The boy stood on the burning deck
Selling peas a penny a peck
Then along came Montegue
Quick lads, arses to the mast
Until Montegue has past
But Montegue the crafty sod threw the boy a fritter
The boy bent down to pick it up
Whoosh, six inches up his shitter.
 
You guys are leaving out the ultimate seafaring poem:
"The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"
Not naval, but very good.

"He holds him with his glittering eye,
the wedding guest stood still,
and listens like a three-years child,
the Mariner hath his will."
 
I must go down to the sea again,to the lonely sea and Sky
and all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by
and the wheels kick and the winds song and the white sails shaking
and the grey mist on the seas face and a grey dawn breaking

I must go down to the seas again,for the call of the running tide
is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied
and all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying
and the flung spray and the blown spume and the sea gulls crying

I must go down to the seas again to the vagrant gypsy life
to the gulls way and the whales way where the winds like a whetted knife
and all I ask is is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow rover
a quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trips finally over

One of Masefields poems----- not sure what the title is but it rings true
with me--the lure of the sea!!
 
The preacher in the dockyard church one Sunday morning said,
"Some dirty bastard shit himself - I'll punch his ******* head."
Then up stood Jack in the third row back and he spat a greasy gob:
"I'm the one who shit his ******* self, you can chew my carroty knob!
You can chew my carroty knob!"

Then Jenny Wren got up to sing and she warbled like a thrush.
The preacher in the pulpit said, "I think you're ******* lush."
"That's right," said she, "and I've got a fee - it is thirty bob a time."
Then a bosun in the back stood up, "Stand back you dirty bastard she's mine,
Stand back you dirty bastard she's mine."

The organist came down the aisle with the organ on his back.
The preacher in the pulpit said, "You can march that bastard back."
The organist played Heart of Oak, the choir sang Auld Lang Syne.
Then the preacher in the pulpit said, "You've had your ******* time,
You've had your ******* time!"

well it does rhyme
 
I like Shep Woolley's...

Knobby Hall a young OD
Cleaned his suit in CTC
He hung it in the Mess to dry
His oppo lay asleep nearby
And all night long the fumes arose
And drifted up his oppo's nose.

When the Shaker's voice was heard
There was one that did not stir,
Knobby wept and whaled no end
To think that he'd killed his best friend!
The funeral was a grand affair
the RNBT rep was there.

So sailors please be ruled by me,
iIf you clean you suit in CTC,
Always take the greatest care
To hang it in the open air,
But MUCH BETTER if you can
Hang it by a WARDROOM FAN!!!

Were Sam to read this, he'd think he was being persecuted. And of course he'd be quite right. :wink:
 
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