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an Ode to Sailors

Fleet Air Arm
faa_wings-400x150
Association

"an Ode (or two) to Sailors"



I was walking through the Dockyard in a panic,
When I met a matelot old and grey.
Upon his back he had his kitbag and his hammock,
And this is what I heard him say.

I wonder, yes I wonder,
Has the Jossman made a blunder,
When he made this draft chit out for me,
Well I’ve been a barrack stanchion,
The pride of Jago’s mansion.
But I do not want to go to sea.

Oh I like my tiddy Oggie ,
And I like my figgy duff,
And I always say good morning to the chief.
Good Morning Chief!

Oh, I wonder, yes I wonder,
Has the Jossman made a blunder,
When he made this draft chit out for me.



Fleet Air Arm Version (of above):

I was strolling through the gates at Lee-On-Solent.
When I met a Wafu old and grey.
He was seated by his toolbox on the pavement
And this is what I heard him say :

"Oh I wonder, yes I wonder, If the Andrew made a blunder
When they made this Draft Chit out for me!
'Cos I've served on all the Carriers,
Serviced Wessex 5's and Harriers
But now there is no need for me.
Oh I've been up North to Lossie and down south to Cul 'D'
And I always said good morning to the Chief -
"Good Morning Chief!"
Oh I wonder, yes I wonder, if the Andrew made a blunder
When they made this Draft Chit out for me!"



Just A Common Sailor

He was getting old and paunchy, and his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the Legion, telling stories of the past.

Of a war that we had fought in and the deeds that he had done,
Of his exploits with his buddies, they were heroes, every one.

And tho' sometimes, to his neighbours, his tales became a joke
His Legion buddies listened, for they knew whereof he spoke.

But we'll hear his tales no longer for old Bert has passed away,
And the world's a little poorer, for a sailor died today.

He was just a common sailor and his ranks were growing thin,
But his presence should remind us we may need his like again.

For when countries are in conflict, then we find the sailor's part
Is to clean up all the troubles that the politicians start.

If we cannot do him honour while he's here to hear the praise,
Then at least let's give him homage at the ending of his days.

Perhaps just a simple headline in a paper that would say,
Our country is in mourning, for a sailor died today.



Have you news of my boy Jack?
Not this tide.
When d'you think that he'll come back?
Not with this wind blowing, and this tide.
Has any one else had word of him?
Not this tide.
For what is sunk will hardly swim,
Not with this wind blowing, and this tide.
Oh, dear, what comfort can I find?
None this tide,
Nor any tide,
Except he did not shame his kind ---
Not even with that wind blowing, and that tide.
Then hold your head up all the more,
This tide,
And every tide;
Because he was the son you bore,
And gave to that wind blowing and that tide.

Rudyard Kipling (1915)



A Sailor's Grave

Poppies grow in Flander's Field
Over the heads of the brave.
But Poppies don't cover a sailor's grave
Flowers won't grow on a wave.
On land there is usually a marker
A cross, a stone or a tree.
How do you mark the resting place
of the ones that are buried at sea ?
They are no less the fallen
Than the others that are interred on the land.
Though their graves are unadorned
The seamen will understand.
They chose to sail the oceans
They knew were the danger lies
And if tragedy ever happens
The sea claims the sailor who dies.



Printable Contributions Welcomed

an Ode to Sailors
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This Page Last Modified on: November 23 2017 18:51:09.