Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Died Carrying Iron Ore.

              A tale of Joy and Despair   

   A tale of joy and despair,
     the state of the ship
         [is unknown, not unrare.

     On the cheek of Sparks*
                 *radio operator
                           [I saw a tear,
     tear of joy as he shouted... 
         ["he has heeded our prayer,
     we are going home,
                          [it's true, I swear".

     I was sitting half asleep in the captain's chair..

     I was thinking of my house 
                      [which stood in a beautiful square,

     when he showed me
                            [that unexpected telegram
     with the brand of "RCA" , 
                            [a message like a diagram.

Our old ship was sold

    [and we had to sail to Piraeus for scrap...

For the old stoker Jim this news was slap,
this ship had been for years his home,
since his wife left him
           [to Live with someone in Rome.

   Jim and this sixty year old ship,
      were tied as a family
                        [and would be a skip
     if I had not mentioned
                    [that they both,
     were joined like an oath,
     survived into the second world war,
     were amid the German submarines 
                                 [carrying iron ore.

Four hundred and eighty six 
                    [Greek merchant ships were sunk,
        Jim was yelling in his sleep from his bunk,
        and four thousand seamen drowned 
                                            [by the German fury.
        Disabled sailors, Greeks, should consiste 
                                      [Nuremberg's grand jury.

    On the journey to Piraeus we took a break.
        On May nineteen sixty-five, at daybreak,
        we left the dead stoker Jim in the Azores.

        It was the same month that his companion 

                                        [died, carrying Iron Ore.

* Extract from "The Broken Mooring Line", an experiential
poetic work // page c32 // e-mail: pmataragas@yahoo.com //
Texts and Narration: Odysseus Heavilayias - ROTTERDAM //
Language adjustments and text adaptation: Kellene G Safis - CHICAGO//
Digital adaptation and text editing: Cathy Rapakoulia Mataraga - PIRAEUS

the tales of a Greek Sailor

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