Verse > Anthologies > Harvard Classics > English Poetry II: From Collins to Fitzgerald
   English Poetry II: From Collins to Fitzgerald.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
464. A Wet Sheet and a Flowing Sea
Allan Cunningham (1784–1842)
A WET sheet and a flowing sea,
  A wind that follows fast
And fills the white and rustling sail
  And bends the gallant mast;
And bends the gallant mast, my boys,        5
  While like the eagle free
Away the good ship flies, and leaves
  Old England on the lee.
O for a soft and gentle wind!
  I heard a fair one cry;        10
But give to me the snoring breeze
  And white waves heaving high;
And white waves heaving high, my lads,
  The good ship tight and free—
The world of waters is our home,        15
  And merry men are we.
There’s tempest in yon horne´d moon,
  And lightning in yon cloud;
But hark the music, mariners!
  The wind is piping loud;        20
The wind is piping loud, my boys,
  The lightning flashes free—
While the hollow oak our palace is,
  Our heritage the sea.


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