We will remember them.

Today is a day of remembrance around the world, and as this is a Merchant Navy themed blog the following poem is a reminder of the Merchant Seamen who laid down their lives for us.

 

Don’t speak to me of heroes until you’ve heard the tale,
of all those merchant seamen who sailed through storm and gale.

To keep the lifelines open in freedom’s hour of need,
when a tyrant cast a shadow over every nation’s creed.

Captains, greasers, cabin boys, mates and engineers,
heard the call to duty and cast aside their fears.
They stoked those hungry boilers and stood behind the wheel,
whilst cooks and stewards manned the guns on coffins made of steel.
They moved in icy convoys from Scapa to Murmansk,
and crossed the western ocean, never seeking thanks.
They sailed the South Atlantic where raiders lay in wait,
and kept the food lines open to Malta and the Cape.
Tracked by silent U-boats which hunted from below,
Shelled by mighty cannons and fighters flying low.
They clung to burning lifeboats where the sea had turned to flame
and watched their shipmates disappear to everlasting fame.
I speak not of a handful but thirty thousand plus,
some whose names we’ll never know in whom we placed our trust.
They never knew the honour of medals on their chests,
or marching bands and victory and glory and the rest.
The ocean is their resting place, their tombstone is the wind,
the seabirds’ cry their last goodbye to family and friend.
Freighters, troopships, liners, and tankers by the score,
fishing boats and coasters, two thousand ships and more.
Flew their country’s ensign as they sank beneath the waves,
and took those countless heroes to lonely ocean graves.
Their legacy is freedom to those who hold it dear,
to walk with clear horizons and never hide in fear.
So when you speak of heroes, remember those at sea,
defiant merchant seamen who died to keep us free.

 

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.At the going down of the sun and in the morning,We will remember them.

 

 

 

This entry was posted on Sunday, November 11th, 2012 at 2:48 pm by The Mariner. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
Leave a Comment...

You email address won't be made public

Comments (1)
  1. “Gone, but not forgotten”
    Thousands of Merchant Seamen’s graves still lie on the ocean bed,
    Please remember us they merely would have said.
    Beneath the cruel sea our children no longer weep,
    ‘Many a brave heart lies asleep in the Deep’.

    Gone, but not forgotten,
    Our Merchant brothers lay.
    A nation’s blood was taken,
    Such a price to pay?

    Gone, but not forgotten, we remember them today,
    Those that were our life line, all souls for we pray.
    With a Countries call to arms and face the mighty Hun,
    They answered the call to save us all, rarely with a gun.

    Gone, but not forgotten,
    Our Merchant brothers lie.
    Conversing now with “Davey”
    No choice in when would die.

    Thousands of Merchant Seamen’s graves still lie on the ocean bed,
    Many not recorded even though they are dead.
    Thousands of Merchant Seamen’s graves still lie on the ocean bed,
    Most would wish the enemy, were lying there instead.

    Gone, but not forgotten,
    We do our best to remember.
    Those deemed misbegotten,
    At Tower Hill, September.

    Gone, but not forgotten, we remember them today,
    Heroes of one and all,“Our Merchant Navy Men”.
    Could have lost without them, in virtually every way,
    A nation would have starved without them, then.

    Gone with bodies everywhere,
    And to all those that care,
    A reminder of the debt we owe,
    And those seamen that once dared.

    Gone, but not forgotten, we remember them today,
    A bunch of regular sailors, captains and fellow crew.
    Loved ones and some children they –
    fathered, but never knew.

    Gone, but not forgotten,
    Our Merchant brothers lay.
    A nation’s blood was taken,
    Such a price to pay?

    To all that that may be lost to this world and sail on in another, may one day we join you in the happy place that is known as Fiddlers Green. KG.

%d bloggers like this: