A Bad Idea By A Sailor Who Would Rather Forget Then Remember


In the time before steamships,

Some years ago – never mind how long

I had nothing particular to interest me on the shore but,

Occasionally my attention was arrested by a group of bronzed mariners

They were the regulation the circulator

I found myself growing grim

In certain instances they would flank, surround some superior figure,

Acting as shield whenever it was damp

I found myself involuntarily pausing

The signal object was the “Handsome Sailor” of natural regality

Deliberately stepping into the street and methodically knocking people’s hats off

The spontaneous homage of his shipmates

There is nothing surprising in this, but if they knew…

It required a strong moral principle to prevent me from throwing him before coffin

I accounted it high time to get to sea

Under the shadow of the great dingy street-wall of Prince’s Dock

I quietly took to their ship