The Man O' War HMS Arcturus dominated the billowing main!
Foes were fearful of closing battle with 'er should they ever deign!
What a magnificent and imposing sight she was with 'er rigging full o' sail,
As she raced to and fro with Union Jack flying, leaving havoc in 'er trail!
The Master, Captain Pettigrew, ran a taut ship but was beloved by his crew.
He had led them through battle and stormy gale - they were tried and true!
Captain Pettigrew held to tradition and was generous with the cup o' rum!
His crew would follow him anywhere, though at times spent and numb!
During the din of battle when lethal shell flew and the cannon roared,
And though the deck was stained with blood upon its oaken board,
Midst the billowing smoke they saw their gallant captain standing tall,
A source of strength and courage, exhorting victory from one and all!
Though many a battle and raging storm upon 'er had taken their toll,
And 'er wooden hull groaned and creaked with every sea-tossed roll,
She was the pride of the British Fleet and there was ne'er another like 'er!
Just ask any of the crew who served on 'er and they would readily concur!
She made 'er final cruise in 1837 leaving port sailing o'er the horizon,
In 'er usual majestic style, fully rigged displaying flying jib and mizzen!
Alas, she disappeared and 'er demise was never really known for true.
Only He Who rules the sea knows the plight of HMS Arcturus and 'er crew!
Robert L. Hinshaw, CMSgt, USAF, Retired
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