A FBM Cold War Poem
By John Eckard
USS James Monroe SSBN 622
They say we have it easy, and maybe they are right.
We’ve never felt a depth charge, we’ve never seen a fight.
We don’t stink of diesel, we wash our clothes each week.
The nukes will make us tons of water, our hull it doesn’t leak.
The smokeboat sailors have their fun, they say no boomer’s cool,
“Hey squid can I come on your boat and swim around your pool?”
They say we’re soft, we’ll never know, just what their boats went through
to end a war they didn’t start and wish they never knew.
Yes it’s true, our ‘fish’ stay dry, none pass the outer doors.
But wasn’t that the final goal of The War to End All Wars?
So listen now to what I say, we stand our watches well.
And if the time should ever come, we too, will face our hell.
You did your job, you’ve earned our thanks, and the lessons that you taught
are passed to each and every nub that thinks that he’s so hot.
His quals will be as tough as when you first filled out your card.
No sleazy sigs will sully what was meant to be damned hard.
For when those dolphins are tacked on, you know he’ll beam with pride.
And pass on those traditions of the men who fought and died.
We share the tales we’ve heard from you, sometimes we change the names.
But don’t you ever start to think, we’re out here playing games.
We might not have to close and shoot, a ship that’s in our scope.
Our mission’s not the one you had, and so, you’d better hope,
that in our life, your children’s too, in fact, for long past that,
that we will never get flash traffic with a message that
cause ‘birds’, not ‘fish’, to swim away and bring their judgment down
on an enemy that we’ve not seen, nor pinged with sonar sound.
For if we ever fire those shots and bring The Fury of the Sun
to those who threaten you and yours, then our hell has just begun.
You came back heroes to your homes, maybe greeted with a band.
But we’ll come back to nothing, no homes, no kids, no land.
For our war will be the one that really is the end.
It started with the fires of hell that we were told to send.
So go ahead and have your fun, we’ll take on your best shot,
but then go home, and go to sleep, our job is finished not.
We’ll just go on making more patrols, not much to do out here.
Four knots to nowhere, punching holes in an ocean, without fear.