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Look northward, where Duck Island lies,
That glimmer and then are out of sight,
While you crossed the gusty desert by night,
And then as sudden a darkness should follow
The lantern stands ninety feet o'er the tide ;
And surging bewilderment wild and wide,
And whenever the whole weight of ocean is thrown
A great mist-jötun you will see
Lifting himself up silently
High and huge o'er the light-house top,
With hands of wavering spray outspread,
Groping after the little tower
That seems to shrink and shorten and cower,
Till the monster's arms of a sudden drop,
And silently and fruitlessly
He sinks again into the sea.
You, meanwhile, where drenched you stand,
That was not there a moment before,
Feeling their way to you more and more;
If they once should clutch you high as the knees, They would hurl you down like a sprig of kelp, Beyond all reach of hope or help ;
And such in a storm is Appledore.
J. R. LowEll.
THE tide has ebbed away ;
No more wild surgings 'gainst the adamant rocks, No swayings of the sea-weed false that mocks
The hues of gardens gay ;
No laugh of little wavelets at their play; No lucid pools reflecting Heaven's browBoth storm and calm alike are ended now.
The bare grey rocks sit lone;
The shifting sand lies so smooth and dry
Only some weedy fragment blackening thrown
Afar the mountains rise,
And the broad estuary widens out,
All sunshine; wheeling round and round about,
A bird? Nay, seems it rather in these eyes
Beck'ning-Come thou where all we glad souls be.'
O life! O silent shore,
Where we sit patient! O great sea beyond,
Would we were disembodied souls to soar,
THE water rolled · the water swelled,
A fisher sat thereby ;
Cool to his very heart he watched
His line with dreamy eye:
And while his dreamy watch he keeps
The parted waves unclose,
And forth from out the ocean deeps
A water maiden rose.
She sang to him, she spake to him,-
Up to the deadly glow?
Ah! couldst thou know, how well below
Our peaceful lives are passed,
Thou'dst leave thine earth and plunge beneath, And breathe free health at last.
'Bathes not the golden sun his face
The moon too in the sea;
And rise they not from their resting-place
And lures thee not the clear deep heaven
And thy form so fair, so mirrored there
The water rolled — the water swelled,
He felt, as at his love's approach,
Half drew she him, half dropped he in,
And sank to rise no more.
From the German of GOETHE.
THE sea is lonely, the sea is dreary,
The low west wind creeps panting up the shore