George A. Mackenzie
Magellan - Poem by George A. Mackenzie
There is no change upon the deep:
To-day they see the prospect wide
Of yesterday; the same waves leap;
The same pale clouds the distance hide,
Or shaped to mountain-peaks their hopes of land deride.
On and still on the soft winds bear
The rocking vessel, and the main
That is so pitiless and so fair,
Seems like a billowy, boundless plain
Where one might sail, and sail, and ever sail in vain.
Famine is there with haggard cheek,
And fever stares from hollow eyes;
And sullen murmurs rise, that speak
Curses on him whose mad emprise
Has lured men from their homes to die 'neath alien skies.
But he, the captain, he is calm;
His glance compels the mutineer;
In fainting hearts he pours the balm
Of sympathy, and lofty cheer:
'Courage! a few more leagues will prove the earth a sphere.
'The world is round: there is an end;
We do not vainly toil and roam;
The kiss of wife, the clasp of friend,
The fountains and the vines of home,
Wait us beyond the cloud, beyond the edge of foam.'
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