Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE LOST SHIPMATE, by THEODORE GOODRIDGE ROBERTS



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THE LOST SHIPMATE, by            
First Line: Somewhere he failed me, somewhere he slipped away
Last Line: Shall I find you south of the gulf?—or are you dead in my heart?
Alternate Author Name(s): Roberts, T. G.
Subject(s): Loss; Past; Youth


Somewhere he failed me, somewhere he slipped away—
Youth, in his ignorant faith and his bright array.
The tides go out; the tides come flooding in;
Still the old years die and the new begin;
But Youth?—
Somewhere we lost each other, last year or yesterday.

Somewhere he failed me. Down at the harbour-side
I waited for him a-little, where the anchored argosies ride.
I thought he came—the steady "trade" blew free—
I thought he came—'twas but the shadow of me!
And Youth?—
Somewhere he turned and left me, about the turn of the tide.

Perhaps I shall find him. It may be he waits for me,
Sipping those wines we knew, beside some tropic sea;
The tides still serve, and I am out and away
To search the spicy harbours of yesterday
For Youth,
Where the lamps of the town are yellow beyond the lamps on the quay.

Somewhere he failed me, somewhere he slipped away—
Youth, in his ignorant heart and his bright array.
Was it in Bados? God, I would pay to know!
Was it on Spanish Hill, where the roses blow?
Ah, Youth!
Shall I hear your laughter to-morrow, in painted Olivio?

Somewhere I failed him. Somewhere I let him depart—
Youth, who would only sleep for the morn's fresh start.
The tides slipped out, the tides washed out and in,
And Youth and I rejoiced in their wastrel din.
Ah, Youth!
Shall I find you south of the Gulf?—or are you dead in my heart?





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