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The Wanderer

By Ledwidge, Francis

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Book Id: WPLBN0000709483
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 138,983 KB.
Reproduction Date: 2007
Full Text

Title: The Wanderer  
Author: Ledwidge, Francis
Language: English
Subject: Fiction, Poetry, Verse drama
Collections: Poetry Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: World Public Library Association


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Ledwidge, F. (n.d.). The Wanderer. Retrieved from


Excerpt: All day they loitered by the resting ships, // Telling their beauties over, taking stock; // At night the verdict left my messmate's lips, // The Wanderer is the finest ship in dock. // I had not seen her, but a friend, since drowned, // Drew her, with painted ports, low, lovely, lean, // Saying, The Wanderer, clipper, outward bound, // The loveliest ship my eyes have ever seen- // Perhaps to-morrow you will see her sail. // She sails at sunrise: but the morrow showed // No Wanderer setting forth for me to hail; // Far down the stream men pointed where she rode, // Rode the great trackway to the sea, dim, dim, // Already gone before the stars were gone. // I saw her at the sea-line's smoky rim // Grow swiftly vaguer as they towed her on. // Soon even her masts were hidden in the haze // Beyond the city; she was on her course // To trample billows for a hundred days; // That afternoon the northerner gathered force, // Blowing a small snow from a point of east. // Oh, fair for her, we said, to take her south. // And in our spirits, as the wind increased, // We saw her there, beyond the river mouth, // Setting her side-lights in the wildering dark, // To glint upon mad water, while the gale // Roared like a battle, snapping like a shark, // And drunken seamen struggled with the sail. // While with sick hearts her mates put out of mind // Their little children, left astern, ashore, // And the gale's gathering made the darkness' blind, // Water and air one intermingled roar. // Then we forgot her, for the fiddlers played, // Dancing and singing held our merry crew; // The old ship moaned a little as she swayed. // It blew all night, oh, bitter hard it blew! // So that at midnight I was called on deck // To keep an anchor-watch: I heard the sea // Roar past in white procession filled with wreck; // Intense bright stars burned frosty over me, // And the Greek brig beside us dipped and dipped, // White to the muzzle like a half-tide rock, // Drowned to the mainmast with the seas she shipped; // Her cable-swivels clanged at every shock.


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