Learn More

Robert Crawford

(1868 - 13 January 1930 / Australia)

Previous Month July 2014 Next Month
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
31 1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31 1 2 3
Modern Poem of The Day
Select a day from the calendar.
Would you like to see the poem of the day in your e-mail box every morning?
Your email address:
  Subscribe FREE
  Unsubscribe

A Song Of The Sea.


Here within the half-light 'tween the night and day
Upon the sands I lie, with thoughts that idly stirr'd
Seem, as in a dream, with life and death to play,
As o'er the sea there flits a pale white bird.
In my heart I hear it, the murmur of the sea,
Ah! and memories of other lives are stirr'd,
As somewise there came a mystic voice to me
As o'er the sea there flits a pale white bird.
Who but knows that in me is a ghost that hears
A voice it heard of old in the primeval word —
A memory so dim, it like a dream appears
As o'er the sea there flits a pale white bird!

Submitted: Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Do you like this poem?
1 person liked.
0 person did not like.

What do you think this poem is about?



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (A Song Of The Sea. by Robert Crawford )

Enter the verification code :

  • Gold Star - 10,417 Points Gangadharan Nair Pulingat (7/16/2014 4:08:00 AM)

    In twelve lines of this poem the great poet leads us to a separate world of emotions with so much sad and anxiety about the life and death and intermediary thoughts. It is beautifully represented the character of a white bird and mystic ghost representing the death and hopelessness of life I think. This is a beautiful and mystic poem to be read and understand with its imaginations which might have so many hidden meanings in depth of the poem and such importance to the great readers of this poem. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Terence George Craddock (7/16/2012 4:31:00 AM)

    'A Song Of The Sea' by Robert Crawford is an interesting poem. The title suggests a song about the sea which does not eventuate. The first four lines contain several phrases that can symbolize death and these possible metaphors are extended throughout the poem. In line one 'half-light' can mean the darkness described by people moments before they die and the speaker is 'within the half-light'; while night and day can also mean life and death. The speaker is lying on the sands at dusk, but is this the dusk of twilight, or the dusk of a life with the final sands almost run out? The image of 'thoughts that idly stirr'd', might suggest the last breath of life, a faint weak breath; 'Seem, as in a dream, ' and 'with life and death to play, ' further suggests memories in the last moments of life.
    These four lines conclude with a 'pale white bird' flirts over the sea. Death flirts where and as it wills and in European culture, a bird is often considered a harbinger of war, death, disaster, or pestilence. The sea the bird flirts over, is also a grave of the dead, the dead the sea will not give up before judgement day. Pale reminds of dead and people go pale before death. Scenes of nature yes, but why not a seagull, if there is no intended metaphors of death?
    Crawford now personalizes the speaker’s experience with 'In my heart I hear it, ' but what 'murmur of the sea' is felt? Immediately the previously hinted at strange mysterious twilight, intensifies into the macabre; with 'Ah! and memories of other lives are stirr'd, ' other lives remembered with 'As somewise there came a mystic voice to me'. What does this voice say and mean as 'As o'er the sea there flits a pale white bird' is repeated.
    In the final four lines the speaker clearly reveals a ghoulish presence and asks 'Who but knows that in me is a ghost that hears...’? This ghost 'A voice it heard of old in the primeval word —/ A memory so dim, it like a dream appears'. What the meaning of 'primeval word' and the 'memory so dim' is, is not revealed, but 'a dream appears'; directly links back to the 'Seem, as in a dream' of the first lines. The final line, the thrice repeated 'As o'er the sea there flits a pale white bird! ' with now an exclamation mark; suggests a supernatural 'Song Of The Sea' repeating of mystic significance.
    Anyone care to extend this possible reading of the poem or with other readings? I am interested in thoughts by other poets. (Report) Reply

    Gold Star - 10,417 Points Gangadharan Nair Pulingat (7/16/2014 4:09:00 AM)

    Beautifully clarified the points and meaning and grateful too.....

  • Rookie - 212 Points Ramesh T A (7/16/2012 3:20:00 AM)

    White bird flying over sea looks like in a dream a ghost reminding the scary moments of past and future it seems! Image is very impressive in this poem! (Report) Reply

Read all 4 comments »

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. A Spray of Water: Tanka [one narcissus], Chimako Tada
  2. And water lies plainly, Laurie Sheck
  3. Three Little Words, Adam Wilson
  4. Smile 1, Suresh Dogra
  5. Inertia of Mind, Aftab Alam
  6. Page By Page, Katherine Perry
  7. Break pen, hasmukh amathalal
  8. Water, Robert Lowell
  9. Soaking Up Essence Of Meaning, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  10. Full interest, hasmukh amathalal

Poem of the Day

poet Ralph Waldo Emerson

Knows he who tills this lonely field
To reap its scanty corn,
What mystic fruit his acres yield
At midnight and at morn?

In the long sunny afternoon,
...... Read complete »

   

Trending Poems

  1. 04 Tongues Made Of Glass, Shaun Shane
  2. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  3. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  4. Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
  5. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
  6. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  7. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
  8. Trees, Joyce Kilmer
  9. A Poison Tree, William Blake
  10. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda

Trending Poets

[Hata Bildir]