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Poem by Alfred Edward Housman


More Poems. 46. The Land of Biscay


Hearken, landsmen, hearken, seamen, to the tale of grief and me
Looking from the land of Biscay on the waters of the sea.

Looking from the land of Biscay over Ocean to the sky
On the far-beholding foreland paced at even grief and I.
There, as warm the west was burning and the east uncoloured cold,
Down the waterway of sunset drove to shore a ship of gold.
Gold of mast and gold of cordage, gold of sail to sight was she,
And she glassed her ensign golden in the waters of the sea.

Oh, said I, my friend and lover, take we now that ship and sail
Outward in the ebb of hues and steer upon the sunset trail;
Leave the night to fall behind us and the clouding countries leave:
Help for you and me is yonder, in a haven west of eve.

Under hill she neared the harbour, till the gazer could behold
On the golden deck the steersman standing at the helm of gold,
Man and ship and sky and water burning in a single flame;
And the mariner of Ocean, he was calling as he came:
From the highway of the sunset he was shouting on the sea,
ДLandsman of the land of Biscay, have you help for grief and me?Ф

When I heard I did not answer, I stood mute and shook my head:
Son of earth and son of Ocean, much we thought and nothing said.
Grief and I abode the nightfall, to the sunset grief and he
Turned them from the land of Biscay on the waters of the sea.



Alfred Edward Housman


Alfred Edward Housman's other poems:
  1. A Shropshire Lad. 42. The Merry Guide
  2. Last Poems. 13. The Deserter
  3. Last Poems. 20. The Night Is Freezing Fast
  4. A Shropshire Lad. 41. In My Own Shire, if I Was Sad
  5. Additional Poems. 3. When Adam Walked in Eden Young


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