View Full Version : Molly v tin fish:

Keith at Tregenna
3rd April 2012, 08:48 PM

Molly v "Tin Fish".

Always dreamed to travel, thought’s - were of the air,
I walked hand in hand with Molly, we did not have a care.
So fast had I left school and to sea I went,
Molly was my sweetheart, my future wife intent.

Molly was my Dolly and thoughts were of a wedded life,
I had no thought of dying or Tin Fish causing strife.
My Country needed feeding, our forces needed arms,
I left port the first time: all thoughts were of my Molly’s charms.

I had hoped to be flying, dog fights in the air,
had no thought of dying and though I was aware.
Age was against me, although my thoughts were tough,
I went to sea to do my bit, for the air not old enough.

As the days were over and turned more into years,
all thoughts were of Molly and her lonely tears.
Thank God for education, that my Mol could write,
that every destination, I could read her every fright.

Often, I would tell her of the Tin Fish plight,
an enemy torpedo, that missed again tonight,
An enemy Wolf Pack, that meant to do us harm.
remembering our love pact and my Molly’s charm.

Would tell her I would be home soon.
We would have tinned fish, for tea,
it never, did tarnish, Mol, my mum or dad or me.
but, never would a Tin Fish, halt me back to sea.

Though my life is over and the war is won,
my Mol did find a nice guy, they care now for my son.
Though my life is over am sad for dear old Mol.
She’d love to add a tribute near where the seagulls squall.

But, there was a war on, my country sought my life.
never spared a thought the Hun would lose my wife.
Now my Mol is elderly, Tin Fish they have gone ?
Where can she lay down bouquets to those before, now gone.

Mol, has found a tribute at London’s, Tower Hill,
where a sea of ensigns, remember the many still.
Although she lives quite local and visits on her way,
She always pays tribute on our own Merchant Navy Day.

Molly, no longer can face the tinned sardines,
we were lost to the Tin Fish,
but remembered here with in. Trinity Square Gardens
remembers those still in our dreams.

Molly, I did love you always in my life,
not overjoyed with U-boats that robbed me of my wife.
Thank you for the memory of a better life,
glad your not Germanic, as would have been your life.

Had we stayed as lovers and never entered the fray,
we may have lost more brothers and more would have gone away.
If for now you live your life as was meant to be,
always sad when you shed a tear, though it was meant to be.

Just so pleased, to see you with others that remember,
amongst my fellow sailors in tribute and in honour.
in our floral gardens, so different from the sea.
I am so pleased that you at least remember:
the young chap that loved you not only in September.

"Tin Fsh",

At that time the submarine blockade, which was intended to bring Great Britain to her knees, was in full swing, and the constant fear of the ocean traveller was the making of the unwelcome acquaintance of a torpedo, or "tin fish", as that death-dealer was familiarly known.

Tin Fish , tin fish meaning , definition of tin fish , what is tin fish - slang for a torpedo.


Keith at Tregenna
4th April 2012, 10:00 PM
Title: To A U-Boat
Author: Christopher Morley

Christopher Morley's Poem: To A U-Boat (http://www.readbookonline.net/readOnLine/27212/)

With Apologies to William Blake

Tiger, tiger of the seas,
King of scarlet butcheries,
What infernal hand and eye
Planned your dread machinery?

Men of Hamburg, Bremen, Kiel,
Watch the gauge and turn the wheel,
Proud, perhaps, to have defiled
Oceans, to destroy a child.

With your thunderbolt you strike
Cargo, women, all alike--
Stain with red God's clean green sea,
Call it "naval victory."

U-boat, U-boat, as you grope
With your half-blind periscope,
Lo, your hateful trail we mark,
Send you to your kin, the shark!

[The end]

Christopher Morley's poem: To A U-Boat

Keith at Tregenna
6th April 2012, 02:36 PM
Never seeking endorsement, just hope to do my bit now for them, am actually pretty pleased with a few words from Captain Joe Earl MNM:

Hi Keith - Well done I love it and a lovely story - hope you are well - my very best regards Joe

Joe is both a master with Nautical and MN poetry and an inspiration.

Link: Message Board - Joe Earl Poems (http://sleeplikealog.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=verse)


Keith at Tregenna
6th April 2012, 06:15 PM
Just found this!

Molly is a very popular female first name and an uncommon surname.

The name Molly is pronounced - (Mo-lee)

It has an Irish origin and originally comes from the name Mary.

Molly means 'Star of the sea' or 'Sea of Bitterness.'


David Williams
7th April 2012, 12:32 PM
Showed it to the wife,she really enjoyed it.

David & Molly Willliams

Keith at Tregenna
7th April 2012, 06:22 PM
Dedicated to all 'Stars of the sea'.

Including Molly Williams.

To the many good men lost, better to have been under Mol's thumb than under the water.

"Let those who come after see to it that his name be not forgotten".


Keith at Tregenna
10th April 2012, 11:11 PM
Just read about the Tin Fish. Now you have me with tears running down my cheeks again! What lovely words - simple and straight.

Talking of fish, did you know that Jenny (and think all the Luens) never ate fish after Jim was drowned.

LINK: ss-tregenna.co.uk (http://www.ss-tregenna.co.uk/Pdf/BDH%20JIM.pdf)

More than likely, Jim's story stuck in my mind, am no poet, the words just appear or not.

The true life tales near long lost, are inspiration and need to be recorded / saved.


William John Thomas

A Survivor of the sinking of the SS Tregenna

Have just found your web-site about the SS Tregenna. My father, William John Thomas, born 18.01.1918 Bargoed, Glamorgan was one of the 4 survivors of the tragedy on the 17.09.1940. He wrote a short report on the sinking and his survival which I an sending.. Unfortunately, my father passed away in 2002, shortly after his 84th birthday in New Quay, Ceredigion.


Richard Thomas

W.J Thomasís account of the torpedoing of the SS Tregenna.

"I joined the SS Tregenna of St Ives at Swansea on the 26th of June 1940. Soon after leaving, each member of the crew were issued with a Kapok filled waistcoat type lifejacket which we were to wear or keep with us at all times. The voyage took us to USA with a cargo of coal. Homeward, we loaded a full cargo of steel railway lines at Philadelphia. On the 17th September 1940 when nearing the UK we were torpedoed by a German U-boat. This was about 2.30pm. I was asleep at the time and was awakened by the explosion and shuddering of the ship. I put on the lifejacket which I was using as a pillow and rushed out on deck. I could see it was hopeless to go for the lifeboats as I could see they were going under so I decided to jump over the side and get clear in case I would be sucked under with the ship. I saw the stern of the ship disappearing with her propeller still turning. Then the debris started coming up all around me. Fortunately a life raft came up near me and I was able to get on it. That was a stroke of luck. Another crew member joined me shortly after. Within one hour we were picked by another ship of the convoy the SS Phileigh".

My father W. J. Thomas, rarely spoke of that day as it obviously pained him to do so. He once took me up to see the Merchant Navy Memorial at Tower Hill, London and talked about some of the names listed under SS Tregenna and the tears flowed as he talked about the 15 year old cabin boy and others who were even younger than himself.

He told me that he had once received a letter from the mother of one of those missing begging him for news and asking whether there was the remotest of possibilities that her son could have survived.

Many years later he was having a drink in the Buck Inn, Pontlliw, near Swansea (As he used to say "he was never one to pass the Buck"!), he met a man wearing a Merchant Navy tie and they started talking. The other man said in the conversation "I knew a Will Thomas from New Quay, I helped pull him out of the water onto the SS Filleigh during the War after his ship, the SS Tregenna was sunk.

I lent him some of my clothes and he never gave them back to me!" My father brought that man (a guy from the Llandeilo area) back home to meet my mother, went up the attic and gave him a parcel containing the clothes that had been lent him those many years ago. Now I wasn't a witness to this but my mother swears it's a true story and not a seaman's yarn!

Now I'm writing this from Berlin, Germany where I now live (another of life's ironies) and where that U-Boot Kapitšn was killed in 1943! and so I have no pictures here of Dad in uniform. I've spoken to my mother (she's 86 ) and she'll be coming over with a brother of mine next month. I've told her to bring any photos and letters she can find. I'll be able to scan and send any suitable ones to you.


Richard Thomas.

Nothing I ever attempt to write, in poetry or prose, in jest or remembrance will be as good as those in real tribute: I write much, banter if fitting, but care more: I attempt only to remember, as they may have asked:

"Let those who come after see to it that his name be not forgotten".


---------- Post added 11th April 2012 at 12:11 AM ---------- Previous post was 10th April 2012 at 10:36 PM ----------

Could have used many names: Mol came to mind.

In respect to Minnie: add her name.

LINK: http://www.merchant-navy.net/forum/nautical-poetry/14315-molly-v-tin-fish.html

Wifey: of Captain Cecil Foster: RIP.

If a film was ever made, a true story would be told.


Heart and sole: love story:


happy daze john in oz
11th April 2012, 06:31 AM
What did you show her Dave??????