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.
The old voice of the ocean, the bird-chatter of little rivers, (Winter has given them gold for silver To stain their water and bladed green for brown to line their banks) From different throats intone one language. So I believe if we were strong enough to listen without Divisions of desire and terror To the storm of the sick nations, the rage of the hunger smitten cities, Those voices also would be found Clean as a child’s; or like some girl’s breathing who dances alone By the ocean-shore, dreaming of lovers.
The stars are everywhere tonight, Above, beneath me and around; They fill the sky with powdery light And glimmer from the night-strewn ground; For where the folded daisies are In every one I see a star.
And so I know that when I pass Where no man’s shadow counts the hours And where the sky was there is grass And where the stars were there are flowers, Through the long night in which I lie Stars will be shining in my sky.