Cicely Fox Smith

(1 February 1882 – 8 April 1954 / Lymm, Cheshire)

The Blue Peter - Poem by Cicely Fox Smith

Last night when I left her my true love was weeping
For sorrow at parting, but parting must be:
What use for her tears, and what use to be keeping
A lad by the fireside, that follows the sea?
For the cold day’s a-breaking, the town hardly waking,
The moon like a ghost in the pale morning sky,
And the Blue Peter’s blowing, to tell ye we’re going,
And the gulls in the river all calling good-bye!

The last hawser’s cast and the tug-whistle’s blowing,
The shore growing dim in the mist and the rain:
And wide, very wide, is the world where we’re going
And long, very long, till ye see us again!

Farewell and adieu to ye - still we’ll be true to ye,
Still we’ll remember wherever we be, -
Hope we’ll be meeting ye, hope you will be greeting
Someday your sailor home from the sea!

All in the cold morning, all in the grey weather,
On the sheds and the shipping the rain slating down,
All hands to the capstan bars, roaring together
A stave for farewell to the folk of the town:
Hong Kong and Vancouver, Callao and Suva,
The Cape and Kowloon, it’s a very far cry
From the slow river creeping by houses all sleeping,
And the gulls in the wake of us, calling good-bye!

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Poem Submitted: Monday, August 30, 2010

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