Cicely Fox Smith

(1882-1954 / England)

By The Old Pagoda Anchorage [1924]


By the old Pagoda Anchorage they lay full fifteen strong,
And their spars were like a forest, and their names were like a song.
Fiery Cross and Falcon there
Lay with Spindrift, doomed and fair,
And Sir Lancelot of a hundred famous fights with wind and wave,
Belted Will and Hallowe'en
With Leander there were seen,
And Ariel and Titania and Robin Hood the brave . . .
Thyatira of the lovely name and proud Thermopylae,
By the old Pagoda Anchorage when clippers sailed the sea -
Racing home to London River -
Carry on for London River -
Crack her on for London River with her chests of China tea!

By the old Pagoda Anchorage (it's many a year ago!)
A sight it was to see them with their decks like drifted snow,
And their brasses winking bright,
And the gleaming gold and white
Of the carven kings and maidens on each slim and soaring bow,
And the high and slender spars
Humming shanties to the stars,
And the hulls whose speed and staunchness are a dead man's secret now, -
The ships so brave and beautiful that never more shall be,
By the old Pagoda Anchorage when clippers sailed the sea -
Racing home to London River -
Crack her on for London River -
Carry on for London River with her chests of China tea!

Submitted: Monday, August 30, 2010

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