So legendary, it tells with pride
of an era of courageous heroics.
But the shadowy forms on lower decks
embedded in rope, beam and sacking,
are the mute story tellers; the true heroes
of that bygone age, who linger still,
bound here by experience: a nation's sacrifices,
clinging to their flagship for all eternity.
Their organs once pierced by oaken splinters
still ache from wounds that cannot heal.
Oh these poor wretches, mere cannon fodder
for the hungry jaws of greed and war.
How easy for us now to stroll on deck,
here in Portsmouth's famed dry dock
and idolize Horatio as if a God,
without thought of his minions who saved the day.