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Narragansett Bay (Rhode Island, United States) (search for this): chapter 3
no more return! And men shall sigh, and women weep, Whose dear ones pale and pine, And sadly over sunset seas Await the ghostly sign. They know not that its sails are filled By pity's tender breath, Nor see the Angel at the helm Who steers the Ship of Death! 1866. ‘Chill as a down-east breeze should be,’ The Book-man said. “A ghostly touch The legend has. I'm glad to see Your flying Yankee beat the Dutch.” “Well, here is something of the sort Which one midsummer day I caught In Narragansett Bay, for lack of fish.” ‘We wait,’ the Traveller said; ‘serve hot or cold your dish.’ The Palatine. Block Island in Long Island Sound, called by the Indians Manisees, the isle of the little god, was the scene of a tragic incident a hundred years or more ago, when The Palatine, an emigrant ship bound for Philadelphia, driven off its course, came upon the coast at this point. A mutiny on board, followed by an inhuman desertion on the part of the crew, had brought the unha
Labrador (Canada) (search for this): chapter 3
ocence, as Gyges by his ring. The clanging sea-fowl came and went, The hunter's gun in the marshes rang; At nightfall from a neighboring tent A flute-voiced woman sweetly sang. Loose-haired, barefooted, hand-in-hand, Young girls went tripping down the sand; And youths and maidens, sitting in the moon, Dreamed o'er the old fond dream from which we wake too soon. At times their fishing-lines they plied, With an old Triton at the oar, Salt as the sea-wind, tough and dried As a lean cusk from Labrador. Strange tales he told of wreck and storm,— Had seen the sea-snake's awful form, And heard the ghosts on Haley's Isle complain, Speak him off shore, and beg a passage to old Spain! And there, on breezy morns, they saw The fishing-schooners outward run, Their low-bent sails in tack and flaw Turned white or dark to shade and sun. Sometimes, in calms of closing day, They watched the spectral mirage play, Saw low, far islands looming tall and nigh, And ships, with upturned keels, sail like a
Hampton River (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 3
of the New Hampshire sea-coast is especially marked near its southern extremity, by the salt-meadows of Hampton. The Hampton River winds through these meadows, and the reader may, if he choose, imagine my tent pitched near its mouth, where also wasteel. Once, in the old Colonial days, Two hundred years ago and more, A boat sailed down through the winding ways Of Hampton River to that low shore, Full of a goodly company Sailing out on the summer sea, Veering to catch the land-breeze light, Wi with its wild gray hair, And nose like a hawk, and eyes like a snake.” But merrily still, with laugh and shout, From Hampton River the boat sailed out, Till the huts and the flakes on Star seemed nigh, And they lost the scent of the pines of Rye. eye could reach, No life was seen upon wave or beach; The boat that went out at morning never Sailed back again into Hampton River. O mower, lean on thy bended snath, Look from the meadows green and low: The wind of the sea is a waft of death, The
Montauk (New York, United States) (search for this): chapter 3
p. Every twelvemonth, according to the same tradition, the spectacle of a ship on fire is visible to the inhabitants of the island. leagues north, as fly the gull and auk, Point Judith watches with eye of hawk; Leagues south, thy beacon flames, Montauk! Lonely and wind-shorn, wood-forsaken, With never a tree for Spring to waken, For tryst of lovers or farewells taken, Circled by waters that never freeze, Beaten by billow and swept by breeze, Lieth the island of Manisees, Set at the mouth oo pictures of all the ages live On Nature's infinite negative, Which, half in sport, in malice half, She shows at times, with shudder or laugh, Phantom and shadow in photograph? For still, on many a moonless night, From Kingston Head and from Montauk light The spectre kindles and burns in sight. Now low and dim, now clear and higher, Leaps up the terrible Ghost of Fire, Then, slowly sinking, the flames expire. And the wise Sound skippers, though skies be fine, Reef their sails when they se
Newfoundland (Canada) (search for this): chapter 3
r weather, Two maidens sat together. They sat and watched in idle mood The gleam and shade of lake and wood; The beach the keen light smote, The white sail of a boat; Swan flocks of lilies shoreward lying, In sweetness, not in music, dying; Hardhack, and virgin's-bower, And white-spiked clethra-flower. With careless ears they heard the plash And breezy wash of Attitash, The wood-bird's plaintive cry, The locust's sharp reply. And teased the while, with playful hand, The shaggy dog of Newfoundland, Whose uncouth frolic spilled Their baskets berry-filled. Then one, the beauty of whose eyes Was evermore a great surprise, Tossed back her queenly head, And, lightly laughing, said: “No bridegroom's hand be mine to hold That is not lined with yellow gold; I tread no cottage-floor; I own no lover poor. My love must come on silken wings, With bridal lights of diamond rings, Not foul with kitchen smirch, With tallow-dip for torch. “ The other, on whose modest head Was lesser dower of
Agamenticus (Maine, United States) (search for this): chapter 3
him to return to England, where he enjoyed the esteem and favor of Oliver Cromwell during the Protectorate. Rivermouth Rocks are fair to see, By dawn or sunset shone across, When the ebb of the sea has left them free, To dry their fringes of gold-green moss: For there the river comes winding down, From salt sea-meadows and uplands brown, And waves on the outer rocks afoam Shout to its waters, ‘Welcome home!’ And fair are the sunny isles in view East of the grisly Head of the Boar, And Agamenticus lifts its blue Disk of a cloud the woodlands o'er; And southerly, when the tide is down, 'Twixt white sea-waves and sand-hills brown, The beach-birds dance and the gray gulls wheel Over a floor of burnished steel. Once, in the old Colonial days, Two hundred years ago and more, A boat sailed down through the winding ways Of Hampton River to that low shore, Full of a goodly company Sailing out on the summer sea, Veering to catch the land-breeze light, With the Boar to left and the Rocks to
New Hampshire (New Hampshire, United States) (search for this): chapter 3
The tent on the Beach It can scarcely be necessary to name as the two companions whom I reckoned with myself in this poetical picnic, Fields the lettered magnate, and Taylor the free cosmopolite. The long line of sandy beach which defines almost the whole of the New Hampshire sea-coast is especially marked near its southern extremity, by the salt-meadows of Hampton. The Hampton River winds through these meadows, and the reader may, if he choose, imagine my tent pitched near its mouth, where also was the scene of the Wreck of Rivernouth. The green bluff to the northward is Great Boar's Head; southward is the Merrimac, with Newburyport lifting its steeples above brown roofs and green trees on its banks. I would not sin, in this half-playful strain,— Too light perhaps for serious years, though born Of the enforced leisure of slow pain,— Against the pure ideal which has drawn My feet to follow its far-shining gleam. A simple plot is mine: legends and runes Of credulous days, old
Narragansett (Rhode Island, United States) (search for this): chapter 3
ow and dim, now clear and higher, Leaps up the terrible Ghost of Fire, Then, slowly sinking, the flames expire. And the wise Sound skippers, though skies be fine, Reef their sails when they see the sign Of the blazing wreck of the Palatine! 1867. ‘A fitter tale to scream than sing,’ The Book-man said. ‘Well, fancy, then,’ The Reader answered, “on the wing The sea-birds shriek it, not for men, But in the ear of wave and breeze!” The Traveller mused: “Your Manisees Is fairy-land: off Narragansett shore Who ever saw the isle or heard its name before? Tis some strange land of Flyaway, Whose dreamy shore the ship beguiles, St. Brandan's in its sea-mist gray, Or sunset loom of Fortunate Isles! “ ” No ghost, but solid turf and rock Is the good island known as Block, “ The Reader said.” For beauty and for ease I chose its Indian name, soft-flowing Manisees! But let it pass; here is a bit Of unrhymed story, with a hint Of the old preaching mood in it, The sort of sidel
Melvin River (New Hampshire, United States) (search for this): chapter 3
Isle kindled its great red star; And life and death in my old-time lay Mingled in peace like the night and day! ‘Well!’ said the Man of Books, “your story Is really not ill told in verse. As the Celt said of purgatory, One might go farther and fare worse.” The Reader smiled; and once again With steadier voice took up his strain, While the fair singer from the neighboring tent Drew near, and at his side a graceful listener bent. 1864. The grave by the Lake. At the mouth of the Melvin River, which empties into Moultonboro Bay in Lake Winnipesaukee, is a great mound. The Ossipee Indians had their home in the neighborhood of the bay, which is plentifully stocked with fish, and many relies of their occupation have been found. where the Great Lake's sunny smiles Dimple round its hundred isles, And the mountain's granite ledge Cleaves the water like a wedge, Ringed about with smooth, gray stones, Rest the giant's mighty bones. Close beside, in shade and gleam, Laughs and ripp
Tuscan (Mississippi, United States) (search for this): chapter 3
g breeze That whispered in the garden trees, It might have been the sound of seas That rose and fell; But, with her heart, if not her ear, The old loved voice she seemed to hear: “I wait to meet thee: be of cheer, For all is well!” 1865. The sweet voice into silence went, A silence which was almost pain As through it rolled the long lament, The cadence of the mournful main. Glancing his written pages o'er, The Reader tried his part once more; Leaving the land of hackmatack and pine For Tuscan valleys glad with olive and with vine. The brother of Mercy. Piero Luca, known of all the town As the gray porter by the Pitti wall Where the noon shadows of the gardens fall, Sick and in dolor, waited to lay down His last sad burden, and beside his mat The barefoot monk of La Certosa sat. Unseen, in square and blossoming garden drifted, Soft sunset lights through green Val d'arno sifted; Unheard, below the living shuttles shifted Backward and forth, and wove, in love or strife, In mir
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