The Witch Maid, and Other Verses/Seagull

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For works with similar titles, see Sea Gull.


O that these words of mine,
    Leaden and dull,
Shone as your feathers shine,
    Swift-racing gull;

Sped like your arrow-flight,
    Flashing between
All the wide heaven's light
    And the waves' green!

Is it the wind's caress
    Bears you along,
Your white wings motionless,
    Delicate, strong?

No, in a moment more
    Down the steep air
You shoot and whirl and soar,
    Effortless there.

Facing the wind you go,
    Splendid and free,
Dark on the sky you show,
    White on the sea.

Now to the waves you swoop,
    Snatch at your prey—
Smoothly you pause and stoop,
    And are away,

While the sea's rage is spent
    Leaping at you,
Who make high merriment
    Up in the blue.

Then to her calming breast
    That pulses still
You will come down to rest
    At your wild will.

O for the shining word
    Swift as the light,
Showing you, gladdest bird,
    Angel of flight!