David Lewis Paget

Freshman - 1,256 Points (22.11.1944 / Nottingham, England/live in Australia)

The Press & Rickety Dan


The Press surrounded the boarding house
That was kept by Mary Toft,
Her sailor man was Rickety Dan
Who was hidden, up in the loft.
‘Come out, come out, wherever you are, ’
Cried the head of the Press Gang crew,
We’ve got you a berth on the frigate ‘Perth’,
‘Don’t make us come looking for you! ’

Mary stood by the door and blocked,
‘You’ll not be coming in here,
You can’t Impress in a private house,
The law of the land is clear.’
‘But this is a plain old Bawdy House
It’s the Navy’s right to come in,
You don’t say no to a guinea or so
From a sailor, looking for sin.’

‘I’ll have you know it’s a Boarding House
Not a Bawdy House, Oh dear!
You’d better go off for a pint of gin
And swill it around in your ear!
A Boarding House is a private house
And protected, under the law,
You’d better go looking somewhere else,
Like ‘The Angel’, down at the shore.’

‘We’re here to pick up Rickety Dan
We know that he’s here with you,
There’s no protection since Bony came
And the Navy’s short of a crew,
So stand aside, by the rising tide
He’ll be lost to you, Miss Toft,
For somewhere out by the channel ports
He’ll be clambering up, aloft.’

Dan had rickets when he was young
His legs were bowed like a bell,
He heard the door come clattering in
And he heard young Mary yell;
He seized his favourite capstan-bar
And he leapt right out of the loft,
Then laid about him from right to left
In defence of his Mary Toft.

The Press consisted of Isaac Raines
A farmer, plucked from the hay,
A weaver, minus the broken frames
The Luddites had taken away,
A shipwright, also a ropemaker
Who had joined to avoid the Press,
‘As long as you bring them in, my lads,
I’ll not let you go for less! ’

Dan lashed out with the capstan-bar
And he laid the weaver low,
Sent the farmer to tend his fields
With only a single blow,
Chased the shipwright out of the door
Where the ropemaker had fled,
Knocked the Lieutenant down to the floor,
Then saw that he lay, stone dead!

‘I’m gone, I’m gone, ’ said Rickety Dan,
‘I’d better head back to the sea,
It’s bad enough that I’ve killed the man
They’ll all be looking for me,
I’ll go and sign on an Indiaman
If I have to sign as a cook,
Once I’m safely away at sea
It’s the last place that they’ll look.’

She never saw Rickety Dan again
Though she’d wait at the turning tide,
Whenever an Indiaman came in
She would dress herself as a bride,
And even after they’d left this life
With Dan no longer aloft,
A bird perched up on the mizzen mast
Would look out for Mary Toft.

Submitted: Saturday, September 21, 2013
Edited: Saturday, September 21, 2013

Form:


Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (The Press & Rickety Dan by David Lewis Paget )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Trending Poets

Trending Poems

  1. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  3. A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe
  4. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
  5. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
  6. If, Rudyard Kipling
  7. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  8. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
  10. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou

Poem of the Day

poet Christopher Marlowe

It lies not in our power to love or hate,
For will in us is overruled by fate.
When two are stripped, long ere the course begin,
We wish that one should love, the other win;

...... Read complete »

   

Member Poem

New Poems

  1. Gesture Of Tiredness, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  2. at home..., veeraiyah subbulakshmi
  3. This Soul's Interior Particles, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  4. Soul's Interior Particles, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  5. Total Encompassing Love, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  6. Notes Of Sadness, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  7. Living With Shadows, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  8. Childhood Preparing Life, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  9. Tempted, Electric Lady
  10. Sincerity, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
[Hata Bildir]