From Leaves of Grass
, by Walt Whitman
In cabin'd ships at sea
The boundless blue on every side expanding,
winds and music of the waves, the large imperious waves,
Or some lone bark buoy'd on the dense marine,
Where joyous full of faith
, spreading white sails,
She cleaves the ether
mid the sparkle and the foam of day, or under many a star at night,
By sailors young and old haply will I, a reminiscence of the land, be read,
In full rapport
at last.Here are our thoughts, voyagers' thoughts,
Here not the land, firm land, alone appears,
may then by them be said,The sky o'erarches here, we feel the undulating deck beneath our feet,
We feel the long pulsation, ebb and flow of endless motion.
The tones of unseen mystery, the vague and vast suggestions of the briny world, the liquid-flowing syllables,
The perfume, the faint creaking of the cordage, the melancholy rhythm,
The boundless vista and the horizon far and dim are all here,
And this is an ocean's poem.
Then falter not O book, fulfil your destiny,
You are not a reminiscence of the land alone,
You too as a lone bark cleaving the ether, purpos'd I know now whither, yer ever full of faith,
Consort to every ship that sails, sail you!
Bear forth to them folded my love
, (dear mariners, for you I fold it here in every lead;)
Speed on my book! spread your white sails my little bark athwart the imperious waves,
Chant on, sail on, bear o'er the boundless blue from me to every sea, This song for mariners and all their ships.