Two old men I’ve long known have lately died,
Both naval veterans from World War Two,
Who had found their souls and bodies sorely tried
Then lived with fears the years could not undo.
Though they went on to lead successful lives
Adjusting to polite civilian ways,
On many nights the ancient fear revives
They said, the same horrific scene replays:
Their little ships are strafed, torpedoed, bombed;
The decks made slick with engine oil and blood
And fears aroused that never could be calmed
And decades later would in nightmares flood.
But those horrendous memories now can cease
As two long-suffering sailors rest in peace.