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An American Sailor

We were titans of iron,
Manning a mighty ship of war.
We stood the line,
And wouldn't back down.
We were groomed,
And trained among the best.
We toiled hours on end,
Training and prepping for war.
We were invincible,
Back in those mighty days.
We complained and moaned,
Of the inequities we did endure,
But now look back,
And realize,
How great we really were.
Sometimes standing days on end,
With minimal sleep,
And vigilant eyes watching
For dangers,
Real and perceived.
We lived on the edge,
And walked a razor thin blade,
Between life and disaster
Every single day.
We longed for time alone,
Where we didn't have to see another man,
And longed for the touch
Of our lovers,
Waiting for us at home.
But press on we did,
For our duty it was clear,
An oath we did take,
And with raised hand we did swear.
So off to remote lands,
We often did sail
To take our precious cargo,
To some enemy to assail.

We are older now,
My friend.
Our bodies,
Not what they used to be.
We tire more easily,
And joints ache more readily.
But the fire we had,
Still does burn deep,
With resolve to end injustice,
In this world I do think.
If given the chance,
As exhausted as we might be
We would pick up,
Dust off,
And fight the good fight,
All over again.
For United States Sailors

Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
What did you think of my title?
How was my language use?
What did you think of the rhythm or pattern or pacing?
How does this theme appeal to you?
How was the beginning/ending of the poem?
Is the internal logic consistent?
Editing stage: 
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The below is a computer-generated response from Neo, Neopoet's computer artificial intelligence:

The poem "An American Sailor" presents a vivid portrayal of the life and experiences of sailors, effectively using imagery and emotive language to engage the reader. However, there are areas where the poem could be improved.

Firstly, the poem could benefit from a more varied and complex vocabulary. Using more descriptive and less common words can add depth to the poem and make it more engaging for the reader. For example, instead of "We were men of steel," consider "We were titans of iron," which adds a mythological connotation and a more unique description.

Secondly, the poem could be more concise. There are several instances where the same idea is repeated, which can make the poem feel redundant. For instance, "We worked hours on end," and "Sometimes standing days on end," both convey the idea of long hours and hard work. It might be more effective to combine these ideas into one powerful line.

Lastly, the poem could benefit from more show, less tell. Instead of telling the reader that the sailors were invincible, show this through their actions or experiences. This will make the poem more engaging and allow the reader to draw their own conclusions about the sailors' character and resilience.

In terms of structure, the poem could benefit from more consistent use of stanza breaks. This can help guide the reader through the poem and make it easier to follow. The current structure is somewhat erratic, which can make the poem feel disjointed.

Overall, the poem has a strong theme and effectively conveys the experiences of sailors. With some revisions, it could be even more engaging and powerful.

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I will consider the suggested revisions

author comment

Ships of Wood and Men of Steel as my late father in law would have said. As a survivor of the Barham sinking and the Effingham at Narvik he would have loved this piece. Very evocative. Alex

Days of wooden ships and iron men is how many of referred to it. Thank you for the kind words. An interesting coincidence, you mention the Effingham ay Narvik, and I live in Effingham NH USA. Again thank you for your input, and have a wonderful day.

author comment

You may be interested to know that my late father in law was on the bridge of the Effingham when she ran aground at Narvik. He was a young signalman. Although not generally known, though rumoured among the crew, when she ran aground the captain called the pilot a quisling and shot him. He was also on the bridge of Barham which is how he was able to get off before she exploded. Alex

So hard to believe a ship as large as the Barham could sink in only 3 minutes. He was lucky to have gotten off and not dragged down with her.

author comment
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