Health and Efficiency on The High Seas
written by David C Johnson ©2018
“ All right, me hearties, it's time for Pilates”,

Barked health-conscious, Captain Blood.
For quite a few of his ugly crew
Used to violently eschew
Any form of physical jerks.
Which led to an inordinate slew
Of sub-standard piracy works.
However, with the aid of this daily routine
And personal counselling sessions,
Blood was glad to observe his store of gold
Increase and his gloominess lessen

Soon other pirates on the main
Noticed that time and again
Captain Blood and his now lithe crew
Seemed to easily outdo
Their own wheezing attempts to scale
Merchant ships to down their sails.
Once-feared, rival buccaneers
Found themselves the butt of sneers
Their unfit crews became bad news
To jades who used to bill and coo
And take them to their beds.

Before long, the rivals realised
Their crews needed exercise
And sought alternate systems
Scowling Blackbeard devised
Daily, morning Boxercise,
He also started to apply
'Though God knows why?
Because even sailing in a hooley
That tell-tale whiff of patchouli
Reached each intended prize
Well before his ship arrived

Captain Kidd, not to be out bid,
And feeling he was on the skids
Insisted on Tai Chi at dawn
And a diet based on Quorn
But his treasure would not grow
His team were fit, but much too slow
Tai Chi, you see, is slo-mo P.E.
Not ideal for piracy

Every morning Captain Morgan
Fed up with the sight of retching
Introduced intensive stretching
As well as brand-new active-wear
He was sure a trendy label
Was just the thing to enable
His crew's morale to build
And capture ships at will.
However, these ruffians
In their spruce new gear,
Shouted out as one: “ NO fear!”
We will not risk a stain or tear
To our lovely leisurewear

In no time, every rogue and ne'er-do-well
Had latched on to this fitness spell
And opened keep fit studios
From Tortuga to fair Curacao
Tempting all those privateers
With ways to boost their foul careers
Capoeira for corsairs
Boot camps for buccaneers
Zumba to a hornpipe beat
Taekwando for the fleet elite
Karate for that boarding party
In the end, these pirates
Did nought all day but train,
And that is why they roam no more
On the Spanish Main.