Bill Meilen
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Akbar Songs
Introduction - 0
View from above upon arrival - 1
First Akbar door - 2
Gear - 3
Meeting the Division - 4
First Communion at Akbar - 5
Shepherd - 6
Lights out - 7
Vultures - 8
Get h’on Parade! - 9
Bandy - 10
Wakey–wakey! - 11
Smartening rig - 12
Economy Star - 13
Poetry Club - 14
The Writer - 15
The Skipper - 16
Boating - 17
Seamanship - 18
The Skipper's Kippers - 19
Moot Court - 20
Dirty Mary - 21
Cross–country - 22
Sailorboy - 23
Church Parade - 24
Fellini fragment on Jildy - 25
Deckscrap - 26
Cinderella Days - 27
Long Tom for 'Dead Men' - 28
Waiting for Podmore - 29
Akbar - 30
The Path - 31
Smartening Rig
The Royal Navy rig makes a boy stand tall
Walk in a different gait from others
Chest up guts in eyes seeking horizons
Beyond the grasp of ordinary boys.
It can not be worn without feeling proud
Of the Puwite–spotless Navy duck cap
The sea–blue faded collar round the neck
Properly silked to tie–tapes at the vee
With chevroned ends aflutter in the breeze
Jumper pulled tight down above bell–bottoms
Marked with the creases of the Seven Seas
Belled about boots of gleaming black Nugget.
The boy feels good, well–fed, smart as a whip
Ready to run his mariner errands
Correctly attired to meet the whole world
Over a honed cutlass or a bowl of mulled ale.