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[299] O ships of mine, whose swift keels cleft
     The enchanted sea on which they sailed,
Are these poor fragments only left
     Of vain desires and hopes that failed?

Did I not watch from them the light
     Of sunset on my towers in Spain,
And see, far off, uploom in sight
     The Fortunate Isles I might not gain?

Did sudden lift of fog reveal
     Arcadia's vales of song and spring,
And did I pass, with grazing keel,
     The rocks whereon the sirens sing?

Have I not drifted hard upon
     The unmapped regions lost to man,
The cloud-pitched tents of Prester John,
     The palace domes of Kubla Khan?

Did land winds blow from jasmine flowers,
     Where Youth the ageless Fountain fills?
Did Love make sign from rose blown bowers,
     And gold from Eldorado's hills?

Alas! the gallant ships, that sailed
     On blind Adventure's errand sent,
Howe'er they laid their courses, failed
     To reach the haven of Content.

And of my ventures, those alone
     Which Love had freighted, safely sped,
Seeking a good beyond my own,
     By clear-eyed Duty piloted.

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