The Battle of the Bight

written by

« Reload image

Had I the fabled herb
  That brought to life the dead,
Whom would I dare disturb
  In his eternal bed?
Great Grenville would I wake,
And with glad tidings make
The soul of mighty Drake
  Heave up a glorying head.

As rose the misty sun,
  Our men the North Sea scanned,
And each rejoicing gun
  Welcomed a Foe at hand,
And thundering its delight,
Opened its mouth outright,
And bit them in the Bight,
  The Bight of Helgoland.

With Captains who could each
  Do aught but yield or flee;
With guns that spake the speech
  Shall keep this Kingdom free;
We hammered to their doom
Four Giants mid the gloom,
And one to a fiercer tomb
  Sent blazing down the sea.

Sleep on, O Drake, sleep well,
  In days not wholly dire!
Grenville, whom nought could quell,
  Unquenched is still thy fire.
And thou that hadst no peer,
Nelson! thou need'st not fear:
Thy sons and heirs are here,
  Nor shall they shame their sire.

© William Watson