Protector of Freedom
Steam maker, Sling shooter of Airplanes
World traveler and Last of a Rare Breed,
Noisy, confident, sprawling,
City on the High Seas:

by LCDR D. Garvey, Hancock AIMD

Note: This Story-Poem is regarded (at least by this Web Yeoman) as the
Official Vietnam Era Hannah Poem

Hanna in her WWII War DressThey tell me you are tough and I believe them, for I have seen your sweating warriors under the grueling sun, each one doing his thing.

And they tell me you are lethal and I answer: yes, it is true I have seen the damage inflicted by your daring pilots.

And they tell me you are brutal and my reply is: on the faces of men and boys I have seen the hunger for home.The Fighting Hannah - 1962 - 1963

And having answered so I turn to those who sneer at this my ship, and I give them back the sneer and say to them:

Come and show me another ship with lifted head singing so proud to be afloat and seasoned and reliable and enduring.

Flinging aircraft into the sky, amid the whine of engines and bursts of flame:

here is a big bold lady set vivid against the soft setting sun;

Fierce as a lioness with eyes gleaming for action, conditioned as an Olympiad ready for competition.

Hannah leaving for WestPac '63Flat-topped, Steaming, Shuddering, launching, recovering, relaunching, Under the smoke, dust all over her back, laughing with splashing mouth, under the awesome burden of peace-keeping, Laughing as a young girl laughs, bragging and laughing that under her decks is the pulse, and under her flags the heart of the crew, Laughing!

Laughing the noisy, confident, sprawling laughter of youth, well armed, sweating, proud to be...

Protector of Freedom, Steam maker, Sling shooter of Airplanes, World traveler and Last of a Rare Breed.

LCDR D. Garvey

Sea Fever

I must go down to the seas again,
to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship
and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel's kick and the wind's song
and the white sail's shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea's face
and a grey dawn breaking.

I must go down to the seas again,
for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call
that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day
with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume,
and the sea-gulls crying.

I must go down to the seas again
to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull's way and the whale's way
where the wind's like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn
from a laughing fellow rover,
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream
when the long trick's over.

-- John Masefield

The above Poem "Hannah" was shared with us, by the late NCCM(SW) C. R. "Corky" Johnson, USN
Please Read Corky's Memoirs

Other Official USS Hancock Poems

| The WWII Hancock Poem | The Vietnam Era Hancock Poem |


For other Sentiments similar to this one go here

USS Hancock Vietnam War Deployment History - 1964 - 1975

Bits and Pieces of our
Collective Hancock Experience
that makes up the
Hancock Mystique

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