Archibald Thomas Strong

(30 December 1876 – 2 September 1930 / South Yarra, Melbourne)

Sonnets of the Empire: Hawk


Great sea dog, fighter in the great old way!
What though thy ships were tinder, and the pest
Rotted thy ruffian crews that need had prest,
And all thy keels were clogged with foul decay,
Yet through the roaring months thy squadron lay
A watch-dog eager at the throat of Brest
While all the ocean smote her from the West
And all the tempests tore her in their play.
Thy soul was of the whirlwind, and thy cry
Still leaps from out the crash of guns and waves
To hurl us headlong on the foeman’s van,
As in the Bay of Death, ’mid breakers high
And felon reefs whereo’er the Atlantic raves,
Thy flagship foremost into glory ran.

Submitted: Wednesday, April 21, 2010

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