Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, SANTORIN (A LEGEND OF THE AEGEAN), by JAMES ELROY FLECKER

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

SANTORIN (A LEGEND OF THE AEGEAN), by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Who are you, sea lady
Last Line: And the sea was only sea.
Subject(s): Legends, Greek; Santorini Island, Greece

"Who are you, Sea Lady,
And where in the seas are we?
I have too long been steering
By the flashes in your eyes.
Why drops the moonlight through my heart,
And why so quietly
Go the great engines of my boat
As if their souls were free?"
"Oh ask me not, bold sailor;
Is not your ship a magic ship
That sails without a sail:
Are not these isles the Isles of Greece
And dust upon the sea?
But answer me three questions
And give me answers three.
What is your ship?" "A British."
"And where may Britain be?"
"Oh it lies north, dear lady;
It is a small country."
"Yet you will know my lover
Though you live far away:
And you will whisper where he has gone.
That lily boy to look upon
And whiter than the spray."
"How should I know your lover,
Lady of the sea?"
"Alexander, Alexander,
The King of the World was he."
"Weep not for him, dear lady,
But come aboard my ship.
So many years ago he died,
He's dead as dead can be."
"O base and brutal sailor
To lie this lie to me.
His mother was the foam-foot
Star-sparkling Aphrodite;
His father was Adonis
Who lives away in Lebanon,
In stony Lebanon, where blooms
His red anemone.
But where is Alexander,
The soldier Alexander,
My golden love of olden days
The King of the world and me?"

She sank into the moonlight
And the sea was only sea.

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