Harry Kemp

(15 December 1883 – 8 August 1960 / Youngstown, Ohio)

A Whaler's Confession


Three long years a-sailing, three long years a-whaling,
Kicking through the ice floes, caught in calm or gale,
Lost in flat Sargasso seas, cursing at the prickly heat,
Going months without a sight of another sail.

I've learned to hate the Mate, and I've always cursed the Captain.
I hate the bally Bo'sun, and all the bally crew, -
And, sometimes, in the night-watch, the long and starry night-watch,
Queer thoughts have run wild in my head - I've even hated you!

You, that have been my shipmate for fifteen years of sailing,
From Peru to Vladivostock, from England to Japan . . .
Which shows how months of sailing, when even pals go whaling,
Can get upon the bally nerves of any bally man.

I'm glad our nose points homeward, points home again to Bristol, -
I'm glad for Kate who's waiting, far down a little lane:
I'll sign her for a long cruise, a longer cruise than this one,
And seal the bargain like a man, before I sail again.

Yes, I will still go sailing; yes, I will still go whaling:
I've done a lot of thinking along of love and hate . . .
For signing on a woman's a cruise that lasts a lifetime -
And I'd rather hate a hundred crews than take on hating Kate!

Three long years of whaling . . . yes, a lifetime sailing,
Kicking through the ice floes, caught in calm or gale,
Lost in flat Sargasso seas, cursing at the prickly heat,
Going months without a sight of another sail!

Submitted: Thursday, April 15, 2010

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

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 Whaler's Confession by Harry Kemp )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. All Equal, A.j. Binash
  2. Letting Go, Electric Lady
  3. नोँसोर फैफिनबाव, Bahadur Basumatary
  4. Love Letters on Leaves, Nalini Chaturvedi
  5. Halved, Raihana Abdul Jabbar
  6. Gathering Rosebuds, Doyen Lingua
  7. My Stallion, Raihana Abdul Jabbar
  8. Hooker Nadine Gordimer, Richard Thripp
  9. swallow, mina lotfi
  10. hey ass-wipe, i love you, Mandolyn ...

Poem of the Day

poet Edmund Spenser

Of this worlds theatre in which we stay,
My love like the spectator ydly sits
Beholding me that all the pageants play,
Disguysing diversly my troubled wits.
...... Read complete »

   
[Hata Bildir]