To Five Who Died at 

Their Posts Below

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Bailey S. Haynie sailed throughout World War II, and was on the SS Liberator when she was attacked by a U-boat. 

He died in Baltimore on 28 January, 1995, at the age of 92. This poem is from the book "Convoy and other poems."  Other similar poems can be read at the U S Merchant Marine web site.

To Five Who Died At Their Posts Below

Bailey S. Haynie

Out from Galveston, loaded deep
With yellow gold for sulphur drugs
Day and night we vigil keep-
On the bridge and down below.

Through the Gulf-stream, up the coast,
Twisting, turning, throbbing along.
"Sank a sub!" And proud our boast
On the bridge and down below.

South of the cape, dark, wild the night.
A dull-red flare, and then a thud.
First, a tiny bonfire light
Seen from our bridge, not down below.

Then a flash that lights the sky
And shows the water angry red
Four miles off, while we stand by
On the bridge and down below.

"Tanker exploded!"; How many dead?
The flash was swallowed in the gloom
While each stands in suspended dread-
We on the bridge, they down below.

Daylight, and off toward the Sound
The sighting of a ship upreared,
Its bow held high, its stern aground
Deep water on bridge and down below.

Offshore, too, on the starboard hand,
Another, with its bow hung low;
Its stern adrift, its stem in sand-
Deep water on bridge and down below.

A numbing blast, and deadly still;
A deluge from a wave flung high.
Sulphur smoke and cordite kill-
Not on our bridge, but down below.




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Dave and Ann Sommers unless otherwise noted and my not be used without permission.

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