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Ah ! why hath Jehovah, in forming the world,
With the waters divided the land,

His ramparts of rocks round the continent hurled,

And cradled the deep in his hand,
(Written at Scarborough, in the summer of 1805.] If man may transgress his eternal command,
All hail to the ruins, the rocks, and the shores ! And leap o'er the bounds of his birth,
Thou wide-rolling Ocean, all hail !

To ravage the uttermost earth,
Now brilliant with sunbeams and dimpled with And violate nations and realms that should be

Distinct as the billows, yet one as the sea ?
Now dark with the fresh-blowing gale,
While soft o'er thy bosom the cloud-shadows sail, There are, gloomy Ocean, a brotherless clan,
And the silver-winged sea-fowl on high,

Who traverse thy banishing waves,
Like meteors bespangle the sky,

The poor disinherited outcasts of man,
Or dive in the gulf, or triumphantly ride,

Whom Avarice coins into slaves.
Like foam on the surges, the swans of the tide.

From the homes of their kindred, their fore.

fathers' graves,
From the tumult and smoke of the city set free, Love, friendship, and conjugal bliss,
With eager and awful delight,

They are dragged on the hoary abyss;
From the crest of the mountain I gaze upon thee, The shark hears their shrieks, and, ascending to-
I gaze, — and am changed at the sight;

For mine eye is illumined, my genius takes flight, Demands of the spoiler his share of the prey.
My soul, like the sun, with a glance
Embraces the boundless expanse,

Then joy to the tempest that whelms them beneath,
And moves on thy waters, wherever they roll,

And makes their destruction its sport; From the day-darting zone to the night-shadowed But woe to the winds that propitiously breathie, pole.

And waft them in safety to port,

Where the vultures and vampires of Mammon
My spirit descends where the day-spring is born, resort;
Where the billows are rubies on fire,

Where Europe exultingly drains
And the breezes that rock the light cradle of morn The life-blood from Africa's veins ;
Are sweet as the Phoenix's pyre.

Where man rules o'er man with a merciless rode
O regions of beauty, of love and desire ! And spurns at his footstool the image of God!

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The hour is approaching,

- a terrible hour ! The blood of our ancestors nourished the tree; And Vengeance is bending her bow;

From their tombs, from their ashes, it sprung; Already the clouds of the hurricane lower, Its boughs with their trophies are hung ; And the rock-rending whirlwinds blow ; Their spirit dwells in it, and — hark! for it Back rolls the huge Ocean, hell opens below;

spoke, The floods return headlong, — they sweep

The voice of our fathers ascends from their oak. The slave-cultured lands to the deep, In a moment entombed in the horrible void, “Ye Britons, who dwell where we conquered of By their Maker himself in his anger destroyed. old,

Who inherit our battle-field graves ; Shall this be the fate of the cane-planted isles, Though poor were your fathers, - gigantic and More lovely than clouds in the west,

bold, When the sun o'er the ocean descending in smiles, We were not, we could not be, slaves ; Sinks softly and sweetly to rest ?

But firm as our rocks, and as free as our waves, No!- Father of mercy! befriend the opprest; The spears of the Romans we broke, At the voice of thy gospel of peace

We never stooped under their yoke. May the sorrows of Africa cease ;

In the shipwreck of nations we stood up alone, And slave and his master devoutly unite The world was great Cæsar's, but Britain our own. To walk in thy freedom and dwell in thy light !


As homeward my weary-winged Fancy extends

Her star-lighted course through the skies,
High over the mighty Atlantic ascends,

OTHOU vast Ocean ! ever

ver-sounding Sea ! And turns upon Europe her eyes :

Thou symbol of a drear immensity ! Ah me! what new prospects, new horrors arise ? Thou thing that windest round the solid world I see the war-tempested flood

Like a huge animal, which, downward hurled All foaming, and panting with blood ;

From the black clouds, lies weltering and alone, The panic-struck Ocean in agony roars, Lashing and writhing till its strength be gone ! Rebounds from the battle, and flies to his shores. Thy voice is like the thunder, and thy sleep

Is as a giant's slumber, loud and deep. For Britannia is wielding the trident to-day, Thou speakest in the east and in the west Consuming her foes in her ire,

At once, and on thy heavily laden breast And hurling her thunder with absolute sway Fleets come and go, and shapes that have no life Froin her wave-ruling chariots of fire.

Or motion, yet are moved and meet in strife. She triumphs ; the winds and the waters con- The earth has naught of this: no chance orchange spire

Ruffles its surface, and no spirits dare To spread her invincible name;

Give answer to the tempest-wakened air ; The universe rings with her fame;

But o'er its wastes the weakly tenants range But the cries the fatherless mix with her At will, and wound its bosom as they go : praise,

Ever the same, it hath no ebb, no flow :
And the tears of the widow are shed on her bays. But in their stated rounds the seasons come,


like visions to their wonted home; O Britain, dear Britain ! the land of my birth; And come again, and vanish ; the young Spring O Isle most enchantingly fair !

Looks ever bright with leaves and blossoming ; Thou Pearl of the Ocean ! thou Gem of the Earth! And Winter always winds his sullen horn, () my Mother, my Mother, beware,

When the wild Autumn, with a look forlorn, For wealth is a phantom, and empire a snare ! Dies in his stormy manhood ; and the skies 0, let not thy birthright be sold

Weep, and flowers sicken, when the summer flies. For reprobate glory and gold !

O, wonderful thou art, great element, Thy distant dominions like wild graftings shoot, And fearful in thy spleeny humors bent, They weigh down thy trunk, they will tear up And lovely in repose ! thy summer form thy root,

Is beautiful, and when thy silver waves

Make music in earth's dark and winding caves, The root of thine oak, O my country! that I love to wander on thy pebbled beach, stands

Marking the sunlight at the evening hour, Rock-planted and flourishing free ;

And hearken to the thoughts thy waters teach, Its branches are stretchedo'er the uttermost lands, Eternity – Eternity -- and Power. And its shadow eclipses the sea.


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And all we shrink from now may seem

No new revealing,
The sunlight glitters keen and bright,

Familiar as our childhood's stream,
Where, away,

Or pleasant memory of a dream,
Lies stretching to my dazzled sight

The loved and cherished Past upon the new life A luminous belt, a misty light,

stealing Beyond the dark pine bluffs and wastes of sandy gray.

Serene and mild, the untried light

May have its dawning ;
The tremulous shadow of the sea !

And, as in summer's northern night
Against its ground

The evening and the dawn unite,

The sunset hues of Time blend with the soul's Of silvery light, rock, hill, and tree, Still as a picture, clear and free,

new morning. With varying outline mark the coast for miles

I sit alone ; in foam and spray around.

Wave after wave

Breaks on the rocks which, stern and gray, On-on we tread with loose-flung rein

Shoulder the broken tide away,
Our seaward way,

Or murmurs hoarse and strong through mossy Through dark-green fields and blossoming

cleft and cave. grain, Where the wild brier-rose skirts the lane, What heed I of the dusty land And bends above our heads the flowering locust

And noisy town? spray.

I see the mighty deep expand

From its white line of glimmering sand Ha! like a kind hand on my brow

To where the blue of heaven on bluer waves Comes this fresh breeze,

shuts down ! Cooling its dull and feverish glow, While through my being seems to flow

In listless quietude of mind, The breath of a new life, the healing of the

I yield to all seas!

The change of cloud and wave and wind ;

And passive on the flood reclined,
Now rest we, where this


I wander with the waves, and with them rise
His feet hath set

and fall. In the great waters, which have bound

But look, thou dreamer ! - - wave and shore His granite ankles greenly round

In shadow lie; With long and tangled moss, and weeds with cool spray wet.

The night-wind warns me back once more

To where, my native hill-tops o'er, Good by to pain and care ! I take

Bends like an arch of fire the glowing sunset Mine ease to-day;

sky! Here, where the sunny waters break,

So then, beach, bluff, and wave, farewell ! And ripples this keen breeze, I shake

I bear with me All burdens from the heart, all weary thoughts

No token stone nor glittering shell, away.

But long and oft shall Memory tell I draw a freer breath - I seem

Of this brief thoughtful hour of musing by the Like all I see

JOHN GREENLEAF WHITTIER. Waves in the sun — the white-winged gleam

Of sea-birds in the slanting beam And far-off sails which flit before the south-wind free.



So when Time's veil shall fall asunder,

The soul may know
No fearful change, nor sudden wonder,

Nor sink the weight of mystery under,
But with the upward rise, and with the vastness


WHEN descends on the Atlantic

The gigantic
Storm-wind of the equinox,
Landward in his wrath he scourges

The toiling surges,
Laden with sea-weed from the rocks :

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