The sea-dog’s shout

Sorry, this one rhymes, too.


“H’all aboard!” came the sea-dog’s shout

To trippers scattered round about.

“A bob a trip – an hour afloat

On ‘Erne Bay’s only pleasure boat.”

The Skylark was the vessel’s name

And every trip was just the same,

In brightest sun or chilly showers

Along the coast to see the Towers.

“Reculver,” he explained to Mum,

“The Romans called Reg Ulbium.”


For Mum it was who’d take the trip

While Dad ashore enjoyed a kip.

I always hoped we’d meet some swell

Or even have a stormy spell.

But calm it was on every ride

And often on the lowest tide

The knotted rope ne’er reached mark twain

Nor half of that, nor half again.


Aboard this boat, abaft the beam

I’d sometimes spot a puff of steam

Then point and yell at what I’d seen

“A paddle ship – the Medway Queen!”

By-inch, by-inch, its crew would gauge

Exactly where the landing stage

Afforded just the very spot

To sidle up at half a knot

And tie abeam the makeshift quay

That floated gently on the sea

Appended to a mile-long pier

In order all the shoals to clear.


As if impressed with such a feat

A little train would rush to meet

The folks from Strood and Chatham, too,

Who’d paddled down to take the view

Of Herne Bay standing on the shore

A world away from South-West Four

And Clapham, which was home to me

Save fourteen days down by the sea.



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What a lovely jogging along poem to start the day, loved every line. 🙂

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