Song from the Ship

To sea! To sea! the calm is o’er;
The wanton water leaps in sport,
And rattles down the pebbly shore;
The dolphin wheels, the sea-cows snort,
And unseen Mermaids’ pearly song
Comes bubbling up the weeds among.
Fling broad the sail, dip deep the oar:
To sea! To sea! the calm is o’er.

Thomas Lovell Beddoes, ‘Song from the Ship’ (1850), first stanza.

The lyric comes from Beddoes’ blank verse drama Death’s Jest Book, or the Fool’s Tragedy. This was published posthumously in 1850 (Beddoes committed suicide in 1848), but had been written and reworked since 1825.

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