David Lewis Paget

(22.11.1944 / Nottingham, England/live in Australia)

Evening Light


Samantha sat at the headland, and
She gazed on out at the sea,
Down where the wake of the submarine
Had all but disappeared,
She thought of her Able Seaman as
The breeze blew through her hair,
And picked a clutch of forget-me-nots
As the seagulls wheeled out there.

He’d said he wouldn’t be gone for long
It was just a practice dive,
Testing all of the systems that
Would keep the men alive,
He looked so young in his Navy Blues
That her heart had skipped a beat,
His eyes as pale as the open sea,
His hair like golden wheat.

She was still a big-eyed, stricken teen
And he was twenty-one,
She’d been brought up on a Dairy Farm,
And he, a Commander’s son,
They planned to marry, but not just now
They would need to wait a bit,
Once, he promised, he’d won his stripes
And served on a surface ship.

She waited up on the headland for
The sub to reappear,
While clouds had billowed over the bluff
To reflect the time of year,
The sun sat on the horizon, and
The breeze blew in with a squall,
She sat and shivered despite herself
And wrapped herself in a shawl.

‘Now don’t you play with the mermaids, ’
She had laughed before he fled
Down the hill, he was running late
To get to the docking shed,
He turned back once and he waved to her
And she thought she saw him smile,
Then lost herself in a dream of lace
As she walked on down the aisle.

The rain came down in a drizzle as
She lost the evening light,
She rose and wandered on homeward
In the bleak, unseeing night,
She didn’t see as the rescue ship
Sailed out into the bay,
But slept as the sub imploded
Just on fifty miles away.

While down and out on the seabed lay
A young Commander’s son,
His blue-eyed stare in surprise out there
As his dreams were all undone,
Those final moments he thought he saw
A mermaid stroke his hair,
Who whispered, ‘This is Samantha,
I’ll be waiting for you there! ’

7 June 2013

Submitted: Thursday, June 06, 2013
Edited: Thursday, August 01, 2013

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