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Ross S Dix-Peek

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HMS Clip-Clop
by Ross S Dix-Peek

Monday, October 25, 2010
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Recent poems by Ross S Dix-Peek
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           >> View all 12

Just about a Frigate during WWII, and my tribute to all the sailors who partook in the war.

 

 

 

 

HMS Clip-Clop

 

 

 

They couldn’t believe what their eyes espied,

The dirty rust bucket to the dock tied,

A naval ship it just could not be,

Although small, a frigate it was, actually

 

HMS Clip-Clop was her name,

And anti-submarine escort was her game,

She’d plied enemy waters now for years,

Under her able skipper, Commander Pears

 

She had sailed from Russia to the Med, and back again,

And although scruffy, was adored by her sailor men,

And many, many a fist fight in the local pub,

When anyone dared refer to her as a rusty old tub

 

But come what may, her crew rightly knew,

That when it came to guts, she was one of the few,

Dogged she would ride the diamond speckled water,

A child of the ocean-sea, old Neptune’s true daughter

 

And then in late October 1944,

Off she went, another escort to the fore,

And the cold Atlantic waters she bravely rode,

As the Destroyers the convoy imperiously bestrode

 

And laugh the other sailors would when she veered into view,

As the grey urchin rolled unsteady upon the ocean-blue,

But deep within her little heart of bolts, oil and steam,

HMS Clip-Clop never, never gave up the dream

 

And early upon the next frozen dawn,

Predators of the deep to the convoy drawn,

Enemy periscopes piercing the watery calm,

Easy prey to the U-Boat’s grasping arm

 

 

And not long before the first flash of death,

And a steel hulk’s last groaning breath,

Then another, and another, and yet more,

All to lie in deathly repose upon the ocean floor

 

Now alert, and the escorting ships ready,

Herding the tankers to safety, sure and steady,

While in the lapping seas the little frigate was forgot,

As the convoy steamed off at a hurried and rapid knot

 

And soon there-after, a most awful jolt,

A torpedo to Clip-Clop’s stern, brought her to a halt,

Commander Pears then shouted, what was wrong,

And the answer came, the engines down, but not for long

 

All the while the steel-sharks circled round,

Thus the little fox and many, many a blood-hound,

And then another silver streak tore into her side,

The ship now awash in the surging tide

 

And just when it all seemed to be the very end,

The engine again roared to life, cheers from end to end,

But what now, what was the little warrior to do?

Die, yes, but with dignity, and a hullabaloo

 

With that, a man-made shark reared its ugly head

From the dark depths of the cold watery bed,

And soon the German crew were manning their gun,

For HMS Clip-Clop there could be no escape, none

 

But Commander Pears was having none of it,

And quickly the little ship was off in a fervent fit,

Churning the waters white as she steamed,

Now, her chance for glory dreamed

 

Then a cacophonous symphony of moaning steel,

As Clip-Clop brought the sleek predator to heel,

Neatly torn in two, the submarine ably sliced,

And to the wrathful gods’ of war sacrificed

 

But, sadly, all to no avail, or so it seemed,

As fate dire death for the little ship deemed,

And alas, the hungry pack was ready to devour,

But then, across the subs’ bows, a white-streaked shower

 

The Destroyers had not forgotten Clip-Clop, they were back,

And the enemy submarines quickly melted away, ending the attack,

Oh, boy, how the bronzed sailors all clapped and shouted

At this scruffy little ship, who had a U-boat routed

 

And back to the convoy, and a safe port they all went,

Her bows heavy with ocean water spent,

And there along the harbour wall, aligned atop

Cheered the roaring crowd for little old Clip-Clop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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