Verse > Anthologies > Alfred H. Miles, ed. > Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century
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Alfred H. Miles, ed.  Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century.  1907.
 
Poems.
III. The Christian Mariner’s Hymn
By Caroline (Bowles) Southey (1787–1854)
 
LAUNCH thy bark, Mariner!
  Christian, God speed thee!
Let loose the rudder-bands—
  Good angels lead thee!
Set thy sails warily,        5
  Tempests will come;
Steer thy course steadily,
  Christian, steer home!
 
Look to the weather-bow,
  Breakers are round thee;        10
Let fall the plummet now,
  Shallows may ground thee.
Reef in the fore-sail, there!
  Hold the helm fast!
So—let the vessel wear—        15
  There swept the blast.
 
“What of the night, watchman?
  What of the night?”
“Cloudy—ail quiet—
  No land yet—all’s right!”        20
Be wakeful, be vigilant—
  Danger may be
At an hour when all seemeth
  Securest to thee.
 
How! gains the leak so fast?        25
  Clear out the hold—
Hoist up thy merchandise,
  Heave out thy gold;—
There—let the ingots go—
  Now the ship rights;        30
Hurrah! the harbour’s near—
  Lo, the red lights!
 
Slacken not sail yet
  At inlet or island;
Straight for the beacon steer,        35
  Straight for the high land;
Crowd all thy canvas on,
  Cut through the foam—
Christian! cast anchor now—
  HEAVEN IS THY HOME!        40
 
 
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