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Felicia Dorothea Hemans

(25 September 1793 – 16 May 1835 / Liverpool, England)

Sea Piece


SUBLIME is thy prospect, thou proud-rolling Ocean,
And Fancy surveys thee with solemn delight;
When thy mountainous billows are wild in commotion,
And the tempest is roused by the spirits of night !

When the moon-beams thro' winter-clouds faintly appearing,
At intervals gleam on the dark-swelling wave;
And the mariner, dubious, now hoping, now fearing,
May hear the stern Genius of hurricanes rave !

But now, when thine anger has long been subsiding,
And the tempest has folded the might of its wing;
How clear is thy surface, in loveliness gliding,
For April has opened the portals of spring !

Now soft on thy bosom the orient is beaming,
And tremulous breezes are waving thy breast;
On thy mirror the clouds and the shadows are streaming,
And morning and glory the picture have drest !

No gale but the balmy Favonian is blowing,
In coral-caves resting, the winds are asleep;
And, rich in the sun-beam, yon pendants are glowing,
That tinge with their colours the silvery deep !

Yet smile or be dreadful, thou still-changing Ocean,
Tremendous or lovely, resistless or still;
I view thee adoring, with hallow'd emotion,
The Power that can hush or arouse thee at will !

Submitted: Thursday, April 08, 2010

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