My ancient ship upon my ancient sea
Begins another voyage—nay, they're gone;
And whither wending? who is gone with thee?
Since parted from thee I am left alone,
Unknowing what my river's fate may be,
Into its native world of tempests thrown.
Lost like the spectres once my eye before,
Which wilder visions muster'd to my mind;
Lost and unnoticed far away the roar
Of southern waters breaking to the wind,
With thunder volleys rolling on before
As the wild gale sweeps wilder on behind,
And every vision of old Afric's shore
As much forgot and vanished out of mind
As the wild track thou makest so long ago
From those eternal waves that surge below.
Gone!—'tis a word which through life's troubled waste
Seems always coming, and the only one
Which can be called the present. Hope is past,
And hate and strife, and love and peace are gone
Before we think them, for their rapid haste
Scarce gives us time for one short smile or groan
Ere that thought dies and new ones come between
It, and our senses like to fleeting suns.