Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, I SAIL IN THE FALL, by DAVID STEFANSSON



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I SAIL IN THE FALL, by            
First Line: Summer is dying, is dying
Last Line: And sail in the fall.
Alternate Author Name(s): Stefansson Fra Fagraskogi, David
Subject(s): Summer


I

SUMMER is dying, is dying,
And cold is the breath of fall.
The waves are beginning to labor
And beat on the ocean-wall.
The leaves are blown from the branches.
The children have frost-reddened lips.
The birds are departing. Keen strain at their cables
The storm-hearted ships.
I yield to a mighty power.
I am drawn by a hidden hand.
And the sea -- the sea is calling
In tones I cannot withstand.
I am the bird that passes,
The ship that the tempests blow.
My song is a song of parting.
I came, and I go.

II

The storm leads away from harbor.
Surf beats the ocean-wall.
I came from the south in summer
And sail in the fall.
Prayers cannot hope to hold me.
I hack through the holiest ties --
Abandon the woman I worship,
The land of my boyhood skies.
I turn from the ship a moment
To speak the farewells I owe.
But my song is a song of parting.
I came, and I go.

III

I envy all that can scorn thee,
Thou wave-driving wind of the deep! --
The sun that glitters in glory,
And the lands that lie asleep;
The peaks in their crystal beauty,
Silent and heaven-high;
And the sphinx that keeps its secret
While the myriad years go by.

IV

I am borne by breeze and billow
From land on to land.
I ask not the people for praises
Or honoring hand.
I long to be blest with friendship,
But am everywhere ever alone,
Ever a man without country,
A vagrant in every zone.
But my song is a song of parting.
Surf beats the ocean-wall.
I came from the south in summer
And sail in the fall.




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