The North Sea Patrol

Poem By Rudyard Kipling

1914-18 -- Sea Warfare


Where the East wind is brewed fresh and fresh every morning,
And the balmy night-breezes blow straight from the Pole,
I heard a Destroyer sing: "What an enjoya-
ble life does one lead on the North Sea Patrol!

"To blow things to bits is our business (and Fritz's),
Which means there are mine-fields wherever you stroll.
Unless you've particular wish to die quick, you'll a-
void steering close to the North Sea Patrol.

"We warn from disaster the mercantile master
Who takes in high Dudgeon our life-saving role,
For every one's grousing at Docking and Dowsing
The marks and the lights on the North Sea Patrol."

[Twelve verses omitted.]

So swept but surviving, half drowned but still driving
I watched her head out through the swell off the shoal,
And I heard her propellers roar- "Write to poor fellers
Who run such a Hell as the North Sea Patrol!"

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Other poems of KIPLING

If

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:

Fuzzy-Wuzzy

We've fought with many men acrost the seas,
An' some of 'em was brave an' some was not:
The Paythan an' the Zulu an' Burmese;
But the Fuzzy was the finest o' the lot.

Angutivaun Taina

Our gloves are stiff with the frozen blood,
Our furs with the drifted snow,
As we come in with the seal--the seal!
In from the edge of the floe.

A Servant When He Reigneth

Three things make earth unquiet
And four she cannot brook
The godly Agur counted them
And put them in a book --

Follow Me 'Ome

There was no one like 'im, 'Orse or Foot,
Nor any o' the Guns I knew;
An' because it was so, why, o' course 'e went an' died,
Which is just what the best men do.

Cleared

Help for a patriot distressed, a spotless spirit hurt,
Help for an honourable clan sore trampled in the dirt!
From Queenstown Bay to Donegal, O listen to my song,
The honourable gentlemen have suffered grievous wrong.