Lay me in the sheets and row
With the tiller in my hand,
Row me in below the beacon
Where my sea-dogs used to land.
Has your captain lost his
After leading you so far?
Row me your last league, my sea-kings;
It is safe within the bar.
Shoulder me and house me hillward,
Where the field-lark makes his bed,
So the gulls can wheel above me,
All day long when I am dead;
Where the keening wind can
With the April rain for guide,
And come crooning her old stories
Of the kingdoms of the tide.
Comrades, comrades, have me
Like a warrior of the sun;
I have carried my sealed orders
Till the last command is done.
Kiss me on the cheek for courage,
(There is none to greet me home,)
Then farewell to your old lover
Of the thunder of the foam;
For the grass is full of slumber
In the twilight world for me,
And my tired hands are slackened
From their toiling on the sea.
A lonely sail in the vast
I have put out for the port of gloom.
The voyage is far on the trackless
The watch is long, and the seas are wide.
The headlands blue in the
Kiss me a hand on the outward way.
The fading gulls, as they
dip and veer,
Lift me a voice that is good to hear.
The great winds come, and
the heaving sea,
The restless mother, is calling me.
The cry of her heart is lone
Searching the night for her wandered child.
Beautiful, weariless mother
In the drift of doom I am here, I am thine.
Beyond the fathom of hope
From bourn to bourn of the dusk I steer,
Swept on in the wake of the
stars, in the stream
Of a roving tide, from dream to dream.