previous next

     When, tall and white, the Dead Ship looms
Against the dusk of land.

She rounds the headland's bristling pines;
     She threads the isle-set bay;
No spur of breeze can speed her on,
     Nor ebb of tide delay.
Old men still walk the Isle of Orr
     Who tell her date and name,
Old shipwrights sit in Freeport yards
     Who hewed her oaken frame.

What weary doom of baffled quest,
     Thou sad sea-ghost, is thine?
What makes thee in the haunts of home
     A wonder and a sign?
No foot is on thy silent deck,
     Upon thy helm no hand;
No ripple hath the soundless wind
     That smites thee from the land!

For never comes the ship to port,
     Howe'er the breeze may be;
Just when she nears the waiting shore
     She drifts again to sea.
No tack of sail, nor turn of helm,
     Nor sheer of veering side;
Stern-fore she drives to sea and night,
     Against the wind and tide.

In vain o'er Harpswell Neck the star
     Of evening guides her in;
In vain for her the lamps are lit
     Within thy tower, Seguin!

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Freeport (Illinois, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Seguin (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: