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Poems - Interesting info

+++++++ "STATION ONE' +++++++

The crippled cans came limping in,
to tell their tale of woe.---
A tale of terror and distress,
of bogies flying low. ---
One had lost her forward guns,
another lost her screws. ---
And still another without a stack,
and half it gallant crew.
-:-
"Bogies bearing one two six,
the range is closing fast..
Action starboard and on port,
our chance has come at last!"
-:-
A message came from Station One,
A message loud and clear:
"We're hit! we're hit!"
Was all it said, yet held not
trace of fear.
-:-
"Torpedo Junction" and the "Slot"
compared to this was not as hot
as Okinawa's Bloody Run --
"Coffin Corner" --
"Station One."
---------------------------------
Author unknown.
From USS Hudson (DD475)
Sometime in 1945
=====================================================

DESTROYERMEN
By: J.A.Donahue
USS Hudson

There's a roll and a pitch, a heave and a pitch
To the nautical gait they take,
For they're used to the cant of the quarter deck's slant
As the white toothed combers break
On the plates that hum like a beaten drum
To the thrill of the turbines might,
As the knife bow leaps through the foamy deep
With the speed of a shell in flight.
Oh, their scorn is deep for the crews who keep
To the battleship's steady floor
For they love the lurch of their own frail perch
At thirty five knots or more.
They don't get much of the drill and such
That the battleship sailors do
For they sail the seas in dungarees
A grey destroyer's crew.
They need not climb at their sleeping time
To a hammock that sways and bumps
For they leap kerplunk into a cozy bunk
That quivers and bucks and jumps.
They hear the sound of the seas that pound
On the half inch plates of steel
And they close their eyes to the lullabies
Of the creaking sides and keel.
They're a lusty crowd that's vastly proud
Of the slim grey craft they drive
Of the roaring flues and the humming screws
Which make her a thing alive.
They love the lunge of her surging plunge
And the murk of her smokescreen too.
As they sail the seas in their dungarees
A grey destroyer's crew.
-*-


Thanks to Charlotte Goerlich, USS ANTHONY for this poem.


"THE SAGA OF DESRON FORTY-FIVE"
(Author unknown)

Nine tin cans sailed out one night
To look at Kavieng.
They steamed right in and shot their wad
And came back home again
The Little Yellow Bastards
With timidity could see
That this was Squadron Forty-Five
The greatest on the sea.

One Division hit Rabaul,
The other hit Kavieng.
The Japs came out to take a look,
They turned around and ran.
They radioed to Tokyo,
"We're running for our lives,
For all the ships out here tonight
Are Desron Forty-Five's."

Commodore "Whitey" looked out on day,
To see what he could see.
He rubbed his eyes and slapped his thighs
And said it couldn't be.
But there as plain as day, sir
And right before his face
Was the bloody Willie Wadsworth
Three stations out of place.

He turned and grabbed the phone
To shout by TBS
"What the hell, What the hell!"
He was pretty sore, I guess.
The Willie Wadsworth stammered
And answered with a croak,
"We can not find our station, sir,
In all this Terry smoke."

The ships of Desron Forty-Five
Steamed up Augusta Bay
The Japs came out to drop their bombs;
It was an awful day
It would have been our last, too,
And it would not be heaven,
Excepting for the Anthony's
A-knockin down eleven.

The Vals came in from up above,
The Kates from dead ahead.
The Anthony was a ball of fire
A-belchin' forth the lead.
It was a phenominal record
And now she hesitates,
To tell you with a broken heart,
"They were P-Thirty-Eights."

Of all the squadrons on the seas,
There is a certain one
Whose ships will always lead the way
In fighting and in fun.
They're all jolly good fellows
Who'll pledge for you their lives,
I'm speaking of the men, my friend,
Of Desron Forty-Five.

(Can be sung to the tune resembling
"I'm A Rambling Wreck.")
-*-



Commentary On The Pledge of Allegiance"
By Brother Red Sklelton, 22"

As a schoolboy, one of Bro. Red Skelton's teachers explained the words and meaning of the Pledge of Allegiance to his class, Bro. Red later wrote down, and eventually recorded his recollection of this lecture. It was followed by an observation of his own.

I -- Me; an individual; a committee of one.

Pledge -- Dedicate all of my worldly goods to give without seIf pity.

Allegiance -- My love and my devotion.

To The Flag -- Our standard; Old Glory: a symbol of Freedom: wherever she waves there is respect, because your loyalty has given her a dignity that shouts, Freedom is everybody's job.

United -- That means that we have all come together.

States -- Individual communities that have united into forty-eight great states. Forty-eight individual communities with pride and dignity and purpose. All divided with imaginary boundaries, yet united to a common purpose, and that is love for country.

And to the Republic -- Republic, a state I which sovereign power is invested in representatives Chosen by the people to govern; and government is the people; and its from the people to the leaders not from the leader., to the People.

For Which It Stands --

One Nation -- One Nation- meaning, so blessed by God.

Indivisible -- Incapable of being divided.

With Liberty -- Which is Freedom; the right of power to live one's own life, without threats, fear, or some sort of retaliation

And Justice -- The principle, or qualities, of dealing fairly with others.

For All -- For All - which means, boys and girls, it's as much your country as it is mine.

And now, boys and girls, let me hear you recite the Pledge of Allegiance:

I pledge allenience to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands; one Nation, Indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

**************************************

Since I was a small boy, two states have been added to our country, and two words have been added to the Pledge of Allegiance: UNDER GOD. Wouldn't it be a pity if someone said that is a prayer, and that would be eliminated from schools, too?

Editor's note:
Brother Red Skelton was raised a Master Mason on September 20, 19.39. On September 24, 1969, he was coronated an Inspector General Honorary Thirty-Third Degree.

From The Florida Mason
Vol 100 Issue No-1
Spring 2000


The Story of "TAPS"

We have all heard the haunting melody of "Taps." It's the song that gives us that lump in our throats and usually tears in our eyes. But do you know the story behind the song? If not, I think you will be pleased to find out about its humble beginnings.

Reportedly, it all began in 1862 during the Civil War, when Union Army Captain Robert Ellicombe was with his men near Harrison's Landing, Virginia. The Confederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land. During the night, Captain Ellicombe heard the moans of a soldier who was severely wounded on the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier, the Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention. Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the stricken soldier and began pulling him toward the encampment. When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead. The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb with shock. In the dim light he saw the face of the soldier. It was his own son.

The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out. Without telling his father, the boy enlisted in the Confederate Army. The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission to give his son a full military burial despite his enemy status. His request was only partially granted. The Captain had asked if he could have a group of Army band members play a funeral dirge for his son at the funeral. The request was denied since the soldier was a Confederate. But out of respect for the father, they did say they could give him one musician. The Captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper in the pocket of the dead youth's uniform.

This wish was granted. The haunting melody, which we now know as "Taps" used at military funerals, was born.

  • "Day is done, Gone the sun, From the lakes, From the hills, From the sky, All is well, Safely rest. - God is nigh.

  • Fading light, Dims the sight, And a star, Gems the sky, Gleaning right, From afar, Drawing nigh, Falls the night.

  • Thanks and praise, For our days, Neath the sun, Neath the stars, Neath the sky, As we go, This we know, God is nigh."
==========================================================
"Taps" is now played by the military at burials, memorial services, during the lowering of the flag and to signal the end of a military day.


***********************************************

Thanks to Al Trudeau for the following.

Once I Was A Navy Man

I like the Navy. I like standing on deck on a long voyage with the sea in my face and ocean winds whipping in from everywhere -- the feel of the giant steel ship beneath me, it's engine driving against the sea.

I like the Navy. I like the clang of steel, the ringing of the bell, the foghorns and strong laughter of Navy men at work. I like the ships of the Navy -- nervous darting destroyers, sleek cruisers, majestic battleships and steady solid carriers.

I like the names of the Navy ships: Midway, Hornet, Enterprise, Sea Wolf, Iwo Jima, Wasp, Shangri-La, and Constitution, Providence -- majestic ships of the line.

I like the bounce of Navy music and the tempo of a Navy Band, "Liberty Whites" and the spice scent of a foreign port. I like shipmates I've sailed with . . . the kid from the Iowa cornfield, a pal from New York's Eastside, an Irishman from Boston, the boogie boarders of California, and of course a drawling friendly Texan. From all parts of the land they came -- farms of the Midwest, small towns of New England -- from the cities, the mountains and the prairies. All Americans, all are comrades in arms. All are men of the sea.

I like the adventure in my heart when the ship puts out to sea, and I like the electric thrill of sailing home again, with the waving hands of welcome from family and friends waiting on shore. The work is hard, the going rough at times, but there's the companionship of robust Navy laughter, the devil-may-care philosophy of the sea.

And after a day of hard duty, there is a serenity of the sea at dusk, as white caps dance on the ocean waves. The sea at night is mysterious. I like the lights of the Navy in darkness -- the masthead lights, and red and green sidelights, and stern light. They cut through the night and look like a mirror of stars in darkness. There are quiet nights and the quiet of the mid-watch when the ghosts of all the sailors of the world stand with you. And there is the aroma of fresh coffee from the galley.

I like the legends of the Navy and the men who made them. like the proud names of Navy heroes: Halsey, Nimitz, Perry, Farragut, and John Paul Jones. A man can find much in the Navy -- comrades in arms, pride in a country. A man can find himself.

In years to come, when the sailor is home from the sea, he will still remember with fondness the ocean spray on his face when the sea is angry. There will still come a faint aroma of fresh paint in his nostrils, the echo of hearty laughter of the seafaring men who once were close companions.

Locked on land, he will grow wistful of his Navy days, when the seas belonged to him and a new port of call was always over the horizon. Remembering this, he will stand taller and say, "ONCE I WAS A NAVY MAN."

(Courtesy of RADM Kenneth G. Haynes, USN(Ret)
Former Commanding Officer, USS PROVIDENCE (CLG 6)



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