Page:Departmental Ditties and Ballads and Barrack-Room Ballads, Kipling, 1899.djvu/255

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71
THE "BOLIVAR"

Heard the seas like drunken men pounding at her strake;
Hoped the Lord 'ud keep his thumb on the plummer-block.


Banged against the iron decks, bilges choked with coal;
Flayed and frozen foot and hand, sick of heart and soul;
'Last we prayed she'd buck herself into Judgment Day—
Hi! we cursed the "Bolivar" knocking round the Bay!


Oh! her nose flung up to sky, groaning to be still—
Up and down and back we went, never time for breath;
Then the money paid at Lloyd's caught her by the heel,
And the stars ran round and round dancin' at our death.


Aching for an hour's sleep, dozing off between;

Heard the rotten rivets draw when she took it green,