The Men Who Sailed Below
Now each of us from time to time has gazed upon the sea
And watched the warships pulling out to keep this country free.
And most of us have read book or head a lusty tale
About the men who
sail theses ships, through lightining, wind and hail
But there's a place within
each ship the ledgend fails to teach.
It's down below the waterline
it takes a living toll
A hot metal living hell that sailors
call "The Hole".
It houses engines run by oil that
makes the shaft go round,
A place of fire, noise and heat that beats your spirit down.
Where engines like a hellish heart, beat until you scream
Are of molded gods without remorse, are a nightmare in a dream.
from the engine's roar is like a living doubt
That any minute would like scorn, escape and crush you
Where turbines scream like tortured souls alone and lost in hell
from above somewhere they answer every bell.
And men who keep the fires lit and make the engines run
Are strangers to the world of night and rarely see the sun.
have no time for man or God, no tolerance for fear
Their aspect pays no living thing the tribute of a tear
not much that men can do that these men haven't done
Beneath the decks deep in
the hole to make the engines run.
And every hour of every day they keep the watch in hell
For if the power
ever fails their ship's a useless shell.
When warships converge to have a war upon an angry sea
The men below just grimly smile at their fate might be.
They're locked below like men fore doomed who hear no battle cry
It's well assumed that if they're hit the men below will die.
every day's a war down there when the gages are all red
A loss of oil
and bearings seized, thrown rods will kill you dead
So if you ever
write your sons or try to tell their tale
Your every word would make
them hear a labored engine's wail.
And people as general rule don't
hear the men of steel
So little is heared about the place closest to
But I can sing of this place and try to make you see
The hardened life of men down there because one of them was me.
I've seen these sweat soaked heroes fight in superheated air
To keep their ship alive and right thought no one knows they're there
And thus they'll for ages on till the warships sail no more
Amid the monster's mighty heat and the engines hellish roar
So when you see a ship pull out to meet a warlike foe,
faintly if you can "THE MEN WHO SAIL BELOW".
Originally written by
Carl Dize MM3 USS Menges DE 320