Walking along the line 'twixt sea and land
I saw a bottle, half hidden by a stone
and buried to the neck in the wet sand.
I picked it up, then, with a puzzled frown,
unstoppered it and, as by mute command
deciphering the note inside, I read:
“The one who finds this will receive all things
his heart desires, his appetites be fed.”
But is this promise what it may appear?
I asked myself. For commoners and kings
alike may find all hope turn to despair;
they all will die; their bodies will decay.
The promise, then, was meaningless and bare.
Grasping the bottle, I hurled it far away.
Note: the last words of each line are the last words of the lines of Shelley's Ozymandias, with which I would not venture to compare it.
For other versions of this exercise by other members, see -
If anyone else would like to try, please feel free, but I'd be glad if you'd let me know.
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.I would like to translate this poem