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Sea Stories

Reuben James Able Seaman
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The Absent Ship






Fair ship, I saw thee bounding o'er the deep,
Thy white wings glancing in the morning ray
And many a sparkling eye in vain did weep
For the bold hearts that steer'd thee on thy way:
Long days of grief have lingered into years:
Return! return! and charm away their tears.

I listen'd till the music and the song
Died on the waters as she swept along;
I watch'd her stately beauty, till it grew
A fading shadow on the distant blue;
Less, and still less--the waters are alone!
Queen of the ocean! whither art thou gone?

The wintry storm hath sighed itself to sleep,
Yet still thou lingerest on the faithless deep;
Have calmer seas, and skies of deeper blue,
Charm'd thee to bid thine island home adieu!
Long has yon dark-eye'd maiden wept in vain:
Return! return! and bid her smile again.

Long may'st thou weep, but never shalt thou see
Thy fair-hair'd mariner return to thee,
Clasp thy young beauty in a long embrace,
And read his pardon in thy happy face;
Thy gentle prayers, fair mourner, could not save!
Thy sailor sleeps within the stormy wave.





Next: Loss Of The Halsewell

Previous: Loss Of The Aeneas Transport



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