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A song which nearly broke my heart
A tramp lay dying in the park.
I knelt beside him to hear him speak
And the words he spoke, they were oh so weak.

He told me a story of long since past,
Of a sailing ship with its long grey mast,
Of his captain's cap with it's shining braid
And the wonderful voyages that he'd made.

"Silent Annie" was his great ship's name.
Like a token of love he spoke her name.
She sailed 'round the Horn, aye, more that once.
She could cut through the waves like a sharpened lance.

"Believe me," he said. His eyes filled with tears
Like a drunk on a corner, trying to remember his years.
He reached out his hand and I took it in mine.
"I believe you," I said, and he gave a sad smile.

"I remember the day when they towed her away.
Her sides they were sore from the sea's angered spray.
They said she's unfit for to sail out once more
(And they towed her more inward from her own sandy shore)?

And as they broke my Silent Annie. I watched with a sigh.
I remembered her beauty when I was a boy.
She was my one love, my life's only dream,
When we sailed out together as captain and queen."

It started to drizzle, and I felt my hand tight
And he squeezed even harder as he ended the fight.
And a crowd they had gathered, and they watched with dismay
As some ambulance men came, and they took him away.

So I got to my feet, and I walked through that park.
The sun it was gone, but it was not yet dark.
My body was wet, and my clothes were not many,
But my mind was aroused by the ship Silent Annie.
 

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The Derelict
Rudyard Kipling

I was the staunchest of our fleet
Till the sea rose beneath my feet
Unheralded, in hatred past all measure.
Into his pits he stamped my crew,
Buffeted, blinded, bound and threw,
Bidding me eyeless wait upon his pleasure.

Man made me, and my will
Is to my maker still,
Whom now the currents con, the rollers steer --
Lifting forlorn to spy
Trailed smoke along the sky,
Falling afraid lest any keel come near!

Wrenched as the lips of thirst,
Wried, dried, and split and burst,
Bone-bleached my decks, wind-scoured to the graining;
And, jarred at every roll
The gear that was my soul
Answers the anguish of my beams' complaining.

For life that crammed me full,
Gangs of the prying gull
That shriek and scrabble on the riven hatches.
For roar that dumbed the gale,
My hawse-pipes' guttering wail,
Sobbing my heart out through the uncounted watches.

Blind in the hot blue ring
Through all my points I swing --
Swing and return to shift the sun anew.
Blind in my well-known sky
I hear the stars go by,
Mocking the prow that cannot hold one true.

White on my wasted path
Wave after wave in wrath
Frets 'gainst his fellow, warring where to send me.
Flung forward, heaved aside,
Witless and dazed I bide
The mercy of the comber that shall end me.

North where the bergs careen,
The spray of seas unseen
Smokes round my head and freezes in the falling.
South where the corals breed,
The footless, floating weed
Folds me and fouls me, strake on strake upcrawling.

I that was clean to run
My race against the sun --
Strength on the deep, am bawd to all disaster;
Whipped forth by night to meet
My sister's careless feet,
And with a kiss betray her to my master.

Man made me, and my will
Is to my maker still --
To him and his, our peoples at their pier:
Lifting in hope to spy
Trailed smoke along the sky,
Falling afraid lest any keel come near!
 

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A Bugis Street Affair

In a dockside bar where sailors drink
I heard a tale that made me think
A tale of lust turned to love
An imperfect match blessed from above
If it came to a landsman in a dream
It would surely wake him, make him scream
It concerned a young AB from Hull
Who in an Eastern port went on the pull
Although a Tar of experience, a good few stamps in his Dis 'A'
But this was his first time out East, an unfortunate trip to go astray
Their first port of call was Singapore
A wondrous place for a run ashore
A place where Sailors, Engineers and Mates ran amok
No immorality here could shock
For he had heard of a place called Bugis Street
And it's many delights for a matelot's treat
Part populated by Ladies of refinement and taste
Elegant breast and wasp like waist
His lust, it grew, prompted by some primordial goad
As his taxi made its way up Rochor Road
He left the taxi and was blinded by the light
Harsh brazen neon shattering the night
His eyes took in all that was on offer
This Eastern paradise, a latter day Gomorrah
From bar and cafe sloe eyed beauties beckoned
On his urgency he felt his senses had not reckoned
After a drink here and there he entered The Caveman Bar
To this portentous place he had come from afar
He ordered a Tiger and viewed the display
Of Eastern beauty in multi hued array
And then his eyes locked on a Beaute du Diable
Against a back wall, alone at a table
Shortest of skirt and lowest cut blouse
Painted for one purpose, to arouse
He stared at her his mind running wild
Then their eyes locked and slowly she smiled
It was if the very air became electrically charged
As he moved toward her, his whole being by lust enlarged
Then as he sat with this Asian coquette
He did not know with his fate he had met
She said her name was May Li, born in Bangkok
And as they spoke their souls seemed to lock
As if in an instant they were heading to her place
He could not mistake the promise held on her smiling face
Then alone at last in her tiny room
Overpowering passion from deep within did loom
Nothing of this world ever existed
As their eyes with want, slowly misted
Their lips met tongues intertwined
Searching within each other, extasy to find
Then on her bed pressed to his chest
He felt against him her firm and eager breast
His hand roamed up her warm and golden thigh
Touched bare flesh bringing forth her deep sigh
Then he leapt from the bed and began a yell
Like a demented Banshee torn from Hell
For his hand had come upon the unexpected
He felt his masculinity had been shattered
Out on the street he ran wild and blind
Escaping the horror he thought to leave behind
Then from behind he heard May Li's cry
And to run any further he could not even try
She stood at the door her face contorted by unspoken grief
He stood and stared then slowly walked back to May Li's great relief.
But that was many years ago
And time heals many things albeit slow
May Li came to England after her Op
And in S****horpe they opened a Fish & Chip Shop
Although they are both now old and grey
Their love is as strong as that first day
So if you’re in S****horpe and can spare half an hour
Pop in to May Li's they do a great Sweet and Sour
 

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Wonderful, Dave! Ha ha ha! Many a lustful dream shattered, the warm glow of a few strengthening Tigers evaporated!

The kai-tais were very entertaining, good company and trustworthy, always up for a dance and a chat, to amuse you, away from routine and the usual faces onboard.

I suppose May Li always asks customers,"Would you like a sausage with that!"

Rgds.
Dave
 

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Wonderful, Dave! Ha ha ha! Many a lustful dream shattered, the warm glow of a few strengthening Tigers evaporated!

The kai-tais were very entertaining, good company and trustworthy, always up for a dance and a chat, to amuse you, away from routine and the usual faces onboard.

I suppose May Li always asks customers, "Would you like a sausage with that!"

Rgds.
Dave
Many thanks Dave, I have no idea where it came from. By the way it was not me that censored the place name in Lincolnshire.
 

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Today, the Mate said "Sparks what's the matter
He said "chief mate you really need a new line in patter"

Day after day with the same old refrain
It really drives me insane"
"If you keep this up i'll go beserk
One month before we reach Dunkirk"

"The same old question , it makes me sweat"
"Sparks, have you got my pay off telegram yet?"
"Alas there is but one reply,
You're not due off and neither am I. "
 

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Hi J Davies,
The way I heard it was that they tore it down as a "slum" and were going to "redevelop". They then realized the unique torist attraction that it was, and rebuilt it, albeit, "sanitized"! I don't really care if the story is true, but it certainly was a part of life for us of a certain era! As I said previously, more than anything else, it was a lot of fun, lighthearted, and a good run up the road.

Another one was Thompson Market. A long lunch, running into dinner and LOADS of Tiger to wash everything down. On my first trip, we had the "bad" luck to be on a Super P that was being sold (PHRONTIS - Ex Pembrokeshire). What a test that was, having to spend a month in Singapore, one day on, one off, twenty four hours up the road if you wanted. Only thing was we were running out of water so we would "shower" on No.5 hatch during the monsoon rain, four o'clock on the dot! Needless to say, I returned home skint.

Rgds.
Dave
 

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Well Dave, I have been here 40 years now and seen some pretty radical changes. It is probably not so much fun for Jolly Jack now. The old red light areas have gone or moved underground and become sordid and expensive, best to avoid, and there are no real fun places to go for a cheap night out except the hawker stalls. It has become a First World, high-tech country now, with all that entails. Not all bad - there are good pubs and live music and great food everywhere, but at a premium price. Best to remember it the way it was perhaps!
 

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Quite, JD! Though criticized by many, I always admired the order and courtesy in Singapore. You cannot beat the food in the hawkers markets.

If I go back, I will have to buy a pair of rose tinted spectacles.

Rgds.
Dave
 

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Well Dave, I have been here 40 years now and seen some pretty radical changes. It is probably not so much fun for Jolly Jack now. The old red light areas have gone or moved underground and become sordid and expensive, best to avoid, and there are no real fun places to go for a cheap night out except the hawker stalls. It has become a First World, high-tech country now, with all that entails. Not all bad - there are good pubs and live music and great food everywhere, but at a premium price. Best to remember it the way it was perhaps!
Hi J ... So if a man ( or a couple of open minded demeanor ) was having a 4 night stay over in Singapore ( Covid permitting of course ) what pubs would you recommend ? ... many thanks in advance.
Norm ( not Norman , legally &officially ;) )
 
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