Sea Fever

The Ships “Winged Arrow” and “Southern Cross” in Boston Harbor by Fitz Henry Lane (Wikimedia Commons)

Sea Fever

by John Masefield

I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by;
And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking.

I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.

I must go down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover,
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over.

Dom was quoting the line about a tall ship and a star to steer her by yesterday. And of course I had to look up the poem, a favorite of mine. I should write out a copy and hang it on the kitchen cabinet to memorize.

One Response to Sea Fever

  1. Stephanie July 31, 2017 at 3:34 pm #

    What a coincidence- I was thinking of the same poem and trying to remember lines too! Love the rolling rhythm and free salt-windiness of it. Another fun poem that our children love is Cargoes by John Masefield. Great for saying together in the car.

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