Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, EVANESCENCE, by JOHN LAWSON STODDARD

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

EVANESCENCE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Passing ships! Passing ships!
Last Line: Must daily mourn some vanished hand.
Subject(s): Life; Sailing & Sailors; Ships & Shipping

Passing ships! Passing ships!
The white foam sparkling at your lips
And countless jewels in your wake
Proclaim your progress o'er the lake,
While on your decks a smiling throng
Surveys this realm of sun and song.

Slipping by! Slipping by!
O'er waves that duplicate the sky
I watch you daily come and go,
But rarely is there one I know
Of all who at your railings stand,
To view with joy this storied land.

On ye pass! On ye pass!
At times I follow through my glass
Your silent course from sunset light
To meet the dusky veil of night,
As swiftly round the curving shore
Glide faces I shall see no more.

Sailing on! Sailing on!
The transient voyagers now are gone;
Yet though the hills their features hide,
One memory of them will abide, --
The thought of their enraptured gaze
In this the gem of Larian bays.

Gliding by! Gliding by!
Why is it that I look, . . . and sigh?
What makes my heart thus vaguely yearn
For strangers who will ne'er return?
I would not really have them stay,
Yet grieve to see them fade away.

Hail-farewell! Hail-farewell!
Those passing steamers seem to tell
That all ships, whether slow or fast,
Will cross life's little bay at last,
While we who linger on the strand
Must daily mourn some vanished hand.

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