"Sad Sea-Horizons"

By George Sterling

I yearn, beside the solemn sea,
    To pass its calm horizon-line:
    In vain, O longing soul of mine!
The star it hides is not for thee.

How strong that hunger of the heart
    For marvels past the haunted bourne
    Of unfamiliar seas that mourn
The tale immortal to impart

Of loves forlorn and wars unsung,
    Forgotten tragedies that were
    Of old upon the sea, and stir
No music on the poet's tongue.

Ghostly, supreme, their voices lift
    Beyond the purple of all seas;
    They lure afar the questing breeze,
And call us that we follow swift—

Voices too sweet for moral sense,
    That waken where the billows surge
    A little past the lonely verge
Of seas unknown that call us thence.

"O beautiful and far away!"
    The lips of ocean seem to cry
    To youth divine that yearns to try
The perils of a distant day.

Star of romance, how far thy goal!
    Remoter than the moons that gleam
    Above the shadow-lands of dream,
Thy futile splendors stir the soul.

And we that seek thee shall not find,
    Nor linger where thy marvels are,
    Elusive as the sea-line far,
And all the secret of the wind.

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