The stoker down below

The stoker down below
by NNPost » Thu Mar 05, 2015 1:43 pm

The Stoker down below

You hear of Tommy Atkins
Those gallant sons of mass
You hear about our sailor boys
Those brave and jolly tars
You read about our airmen
And their exploits o’er the foe
But there’s one you never hear about
The stoker down below.

When the battles at its height
And shells are falling fast
He never knows the moment which
Is going to be his last
He knows his work and does it well
He makes the big ship go
And his breast is filled with pride
He’s the stoker down below.

He knows ‘pon him depends the fate
Of one of Britains Prides
He gets no word from those above
Of how the battle tides
He hears the guns incessant roar
He feels the battle grow
He knows that much depends on him
The stoker down below.

He never sees a shot go home
He never feels the thrill
Of seeing a beaten battered foe
Bend to superior skill
He sees not an enemy flag come down
Yet does he grumble? No.
For still there’s work for him to do
The stoker down below.

And when the battles din has ceased
And the men behind the guns
Have placed another victory
To Britain’s dauntless sons
And others have their honours gained
Do the British public know
That recognition goes to all
But the stoker down below.

So when you say your prayers tonight
And said one for the men who fight
And shed their blood for the cause of right
Just say a little prayer or so
For the stoker down below.

This poem was written in 1914 by Michael Edwin Monaghan whilst serving with the Kings Liverpool Regiment and was put to music by great grandson Mike Monaghan, 100 years later.

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