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Sunset at Sea.
Ten thousand fleets sweep over thee in vain ;
Stops with the shore ;-upon the watery plain The wrecks are all thy deed, nor doth remain
A shadow of man's ravage, save his own, When for a moment, like a drop of rain,
He sinks into thy depths with bubbling groan, Without a grave, unknell'd, uncoffin'd, and unknown.
The armaments which thunderstrike the walls
Of rock-built cities, bidding nations quake, And monarchs tremble in their capitals,
The oak leviathans, whose huge ribs make Their clay creator the vain title
take Of lord of thee, and arbiter of war; These are thy toys, and, as the snowy flake,
They melt into thy yeast of waves, which mar Alike th' Armada's pride, or spoils of Trafalgar.
Thy shores are empires, changed in all save thee
Assyria, Greece, Rome, Carthage, what are they Thy waters wasted them while they were free,
And many a tyrant since; their shores obey The stranger, slave, or savage; their decay
Has dried up realms to deserts :-not so thou, Unchangeable save to thy wild waves' play
Time writes no wrinkle on thine azure browSuch as creation's dawn beheld, thou rollest now,
Thou glorious mirror, where the Almighty's form
Glasses itself in tempests ; in all time,
Icing the pole, or in the torrid clime
The image of Eternity—the throne
The monsters of the deep are made ; each zone Obeys thee; thou goest forth, dread, fathomless, alone.
And I have loved thee, Ocean ! and my joy
Of youthful sports was on thy breast to be Borne, like thy bubbles, onward : from a boy
I wanton'd with thy breakers—they to me Were a delight; and if the freshening sea
Made them a terror-'twas a pleasing fear, For I was as it were a child of thee,
And trusted to thy billows far and near, And laid my hand upon thy mane-as I do here.
The Sea at Midnight.
It is the midnight hour :—the beauteous sea,
Calm as the cloudless heaven, the heaven discloses, While many a sparkling star, in quiet glee,
Far down within the watery sky reposes.
Like that of dreamer murmuring in his sleep;
Above the happy deep.
For the land it is far away ;
Should ever sport and play.
Whose cavern’d base the whirlpools and the waves,
The crags closed round with black and jagged arms,
Sitting on the Shore. The tide has ebb'd away: No more wild dashings 'gainst tbe adamant rocks, Nor swaying amidst seaweed false, that mocks
The hues of garden gay:
No laugh of little wavelets at their play:
The rocks sit grey and lone :
Stirring it with rude moan:
Only some weedy fragment, idly thrown
Afar the mountains rise,
A bird ? Nay, seems it rather in these eyes
O life! O silent shore,
A little while, and then we, too, shall soar
Along its solitary shore,
No sound but ocean's roar,
And on the glassy, heaving sea,
Sits swinging silently;
The brook comes tinkling down its side;
Rings cheerful, far and wide,
R. H. DANA.
'Wild Rocky Scene.
I REMEMBER, Two miles on this side of the fort, the road Crosses a deep ravine : 'tis rough and narrow, And winds with short turns down the precipice; And in its depths there is a mighty rock, Which has, from unimaginable years, Sustain'd itself with terror and with toil Over a gulf, and with the agony With which it clings, seems slowly coming down; Even as a wretched soul, hour after hour, Clings to the mass of life ; yet clinging, leans, And, leaning, makes more dark the dread abyss In which it fears to fall. Beneath this crag, Huge as despair, as if in weariness, The melancholy mountain yawns. Below, You hear, but see not, an impetuous torrent