Sea Stories

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.

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