This, all of it, is true. Done in the traditional style of nautical pomes. Kinda…

Little Davy,  just sixteen years old
Forced to get out and roam
Made to go a’whaling
Away from his Delaware home

East to the Azores he did go
Just as he had been told
And captured he was, by cruel chance
By pirates, fierce and bold

He went with them, he joined the crew
That burned the ships they found
Just to be a cabin boy
And sail the oceans round

They headed West, they headed South
From Brazil down to old Capetown
They steamed and sailed and headed East
And burned the clippers down

To Java next, then Vietnam
Back South to Singapore
They hunted the Indian Ocean
For it was a time of war

From Mozambique to Simonstown
They turned and headed home
For lime was in the boilers
And the ship, she wouldn’t foam

To Cherbourg, on the coast of France
They sailed in, at last
A Yankee ship stood in the way
And so the die was cast

Because he loved his freedom
There was little choice, for him
He told no one, he just went down
Because he couldn’t swim

Little Davy,  just eighteen years old
Forced to go out and roam
Two years gone, and now he’s dead
Away from his Delaware home


David H White, a slave
Drowned on the C.S.S. Alabama
off Cherbourg, France, June 19, 1864

10-1-04

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