Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 5.djvu/666

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
626
[CANTO IV.
THE ISLAND.

CANTO THE FOURTH.

I.

White as a white sail on a dusky sea,
When half the horizon 's clouded and half free,
Fluttering between the dun wave and the sky,
Is Hope's last gleam in Man's extremity.
Her anchor parts; but still her snowy sail
Attracts our eye amidst the rudest gale:
Though every wave she climbs divides us more,
The heart still follows from the loneliest shore.


II.

Not distant from the isle of Toobonai,
A black rock rears its bosom o'er the spray,10
The haunt of birds, a desert to mankind,
Where the rough seal reposes from the wind,
And sleeps unwieldy in his cavern dun,
Or gambols with huge frolic in the sun:
There shrilly to the passing oar is heard
The startled echo of the Ocean bird,
Who rears on its bare breast her callow brood,
The feathered fishers of the solitude.
A narrow segment of the yellow sand
On one side forms the outline of a strand;[1]20
Here the young turtle, crawling from his shell,
Steals to the deep wherein his parents dwell;
Chipped by the beam, a nursling of the day,

But hatched for ocean by the fostering ray;
  1. [Compare The Siege of Corinth, lines 438, 439, Poetical Works, 1900. iii. 467.]