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To the mast nail our flag, it is dark as the grave,
Or the death which it bears while it sweeps o’er the wave.
Let our deck clear for action, our guns be prepared;
Be the boarding-axe sharpened, the scimetar bared;
Set the canisters ready, and then bring to me,
For the last of my duties, the powder-room key.
It shall never be lowered, the black flag we bear;
If the sea be denied us, we sweep through the air.
Unshared have we left our last victory’s prey;
It is mine to divide it, and yours to obey:
There are shawls that might suit a sultana’s white neck,
And pearls that are fair as the arms they will deck;
There are flasks which, unseal them, the air will disclose
Diametta’s fair summers, the home of the rose.
I claim not a portion: I ask but as mine,
'Tis to drink to our victory—one cup of red wine.
Some fight, 'tis for riches; some fight, ’tis for fame:
The first I despise, and the last is a name.
I fight, ’tis for vengeance. I love to see flow,
At the stroke of my sabre, the life of my foe.
I strike for the memory of long vanished years;
I only shed blood, where another sheds tears.
I come, as the lightning comes red from above,
O’er the race that I loathe, to the battle I love.
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"Bona. The Pirate’s Song" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 20 Jan. 2022. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/52694/bona.-the-pirate%E2%80%99s-song>.