David Morton

(1886-1957 / United States)

Shipping News - Poem by David Morton

Here is the record of their splendid days:
The curving prow, the tall and stately mast,
And all the width and wonder of their ways
Reduced to little printed words, at last:
The Helen Dover docks, the Mary Ann
Departs for Ceylon and the Eastern trade:
Arrived: The Jacque, with cargoes from Japan,
And Richard Kidd, a tramp,-and Silver Maid.

The narrow print is wide enough for these:
But here: 'Reported Missing'…the type fails,
The column breaks for white, disastrous seas,
The jagged spars thrust through, and flapping sails
Flagging farewells to sky and wind and shore,
Arrive at silent ports, and leave no more.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, April 22, 2010

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