They climb'd as quickly, for the rim
Changed every moment as we flew.
Far ran the naked moon across

The houseless ocean's heaving field,
Or flying shone, the silver boss
Of her own halo's dusky shield;


The peaky islet shifted shapes,
High towns on hills were dimly seen,
We past long lines of Northern capes
And dewy Northern meadows green.
We came to warmer waves, and deep
Across the boundless east we drove,
Where those long swells of breaker sweep
The nutmeg rocks and isles of clove.


By peaks that flamed, or, all in shade,
Gloom'd the low coast and quivering brine
With ashy rains, that spreading made
Fantastic plume or sable pine;
By sands and steaming flats, and floods
Of mighty mouth, we scudded fast,
And hills and scarlet-mingled woods
Glow'd for a moment as we past.


O hundred shores of happy climes,
How swiftly stream'd ye by the bark !
At times the whole sea burn'd, at times
With wakes of fire we tore the dark;
At times a carven craft would shoot

From havens hid in fairy bowers,
With naked limbs and flowers and fruit,

But we nor paused for fruit nor flowers.


For one fair Vision ever fled
Down the waste waters day and night,
And still we follow'd where she led,
In hope to gain upon her flight.
Her face was evermore unseen,
And fixt upon the far sea-line;
But each man murmur'd "O my Queen,
I follow till I make thee mine."


And now we lost her, now she gleam'd
Like Fancy made of golden air,
Now nearer to the prow she seem'd
Like Virtue firm, like Knowledge fair,
Now high on waves that idly burst

Like Heavenly Hope she crown'd 'the sea,
And now, the bloodless point reversed,
She bore the blade of Liberty.


And only one among us - him

We pleased not he was seldom pleased: He saw not far: his eyes were dim:

But ours he swore were all diseased. "A ship of fools" he shriek'd in spite, "A ship of fools" he sneer'd and wept.

And overboard one stormy night

He cast his body, and on we swept.


And never sail of ours was furl'd,

Nor anchor dropt at eve or morn; We loved the glories of the world,

But laws of nature were our scorn;

For blasts would rise and rave and cease, But whence were those that drove the sail Across the whirlwind's heart of peace,

And to and thro' the counter-gale?


Again to colder climes we came,
For still we follow'd where she led :
Now mate is blind and captain lame,
And half the crew are sick or dead.
But blind or lame or sick or sound
We follow that which flies before:
We know the merry world is round,
And we may sail for evermore.


ALL along the valley, stream that flashest white,
Deepening thy voice with the deepening of the night,
All along the valley, where thy waters flow,

I walk'd with one I loved two and thirty years ago.
All along the valley while I walk'd to-day,
The two and thirty years were a mist that rolls away;
For all along the valley, down thy rocky bed
Thy living voice to me was as the voice of the dead,
And all along the valley, by rock and cave and tree,
The voice of the dead was a living voice to me.



ONCE in a golden hour
I cast to earth a seed.
Up there came a flower,
The people said, a weed.

To and fro they went

Thro' my garden-bower,
And muttering discontent
Cursed me and my flower.


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FAIR is her cottage in its place,

Where yon broad water sweetly slowly glides. It sees itself from thatch to base

Dream in the sliding tides.

And fairer she, but ah how soon to die!

Her quiet dream of life this hour may cease.

Her peaceful being slowly passes by

To some more perfect peace.


He rose at dawn and, fired with hope,
Shot o'er the seething harbor-bar,
And reach'd the ship and caught the rope,
And whistled to the morning star.

And while he whistled long and loud
He heard a fierce mermaiden cry,
"O Boy, tho' thou art young and proud,
I see the place where thou wilt lie.

"The sands and yeasty surges mix
In caves about the dreary bay,
And on thy ribs the limpet sticks,

And in thy heart the scrawl shall play."

"Fool," he answer'd, "death is sure

To those that stay and those that roam, But I will nevermore endure

To sit with empty hands at home.

"My mother clings about my neck,

My sisters crying stay for shame;' My father raves of death and wreck,

They are all to blame, they are all to blame.

"God help me! save I take my part Of danger on the roaring sea,

A devil rises in my heart,

Far worse than any death to me."

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