Christopher Morley

(5 May 1890 – 28 March 1957 / Haverford, Pennslyvania)

The Old Swimmer - Poem by Christopher Morley

I OFTEN wander on the beach
Where once, so brown of limb,
The biting air, the roaring surf
Summoned me to swim.

I see my old abundant youth
Whee combers lean and spill,
And though I taste the foam no more
Other swimmers will.

Oh, good exultant strength to meet
The arching wall of green,
To break the crystal, swirl, emerge
Dripping, taut, and clean.

To climb the moving hilly blue,
To dive in ecstasy
And feel the salty chill embrace
Arm and rib and knee.

What brave and vanished laughter then
And tingling thighs to run,
What warm and comfortable sands
Dreaming in the sun.

The crumbling water spreads in snow,
The surf is hissing still,
And though I kiss the salt no more,
Other swimmers will.


Comments about The Old Swimmer by Christopher Morley

  • (4/28/2014 6:25:00 PM)

    Great reminiscent of good old summer days of refreshing swims and adventure! Much enjoyed. Like the repetition of Other swimmers will Wonderful, moving figurative imagery of the surf! Overall a reflection at peace and content. Very nice. What warm and comfortable sands Dreaming in the sun. How lovely. (Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Michelle Claus (4/28/2014 11:12:00 AM)

    It is small comfort to become old and limited. Admirably, the poet does not express jealousy of the new, able-bodied swimmers. He conveys melancholy and serenity about the tides of life. (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    2 person did not like.
  • Michelle Claus (4/28/2014 11:12:00 AM)

    It is small comfort to become old and limited. Admirably, the poet does not express jealousy of the new, able-bodied swimmers. He conveys melancholy and serenity about the tides of life. (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    2 person did not like.
  • Francis Lynch (4/28/2014 7:10:00 AM)

    it sucks getting old. (Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • (4/28/2014 2:36:00 AM)

    A nice poem for easy reading and reciting. very nice indeed. (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • (4/28/2012 5:08:00 AM)

    hmmm... still refreshing godd memories how fitting walking the beach (Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
Read all 6 comments »



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?



Poem Submitted: Tuesday, April 20, 2010



Famous Poems

  1. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  5. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  6. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  7. Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  8. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
    Mary Elizabeth Frye
  9. I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love You
    Pablo Neruda
  10. Television
    Roald Dahl
[Report Error]