On the eighteenth of October we lay in Bantry Bay,
All ready to set sail, with a fresh and steady gale:
A fortnight and nine days we in the harbour lay,
And no breeze ever reached us or strained a single sail.
Three ships of war had we, and the great guns loaded all;
But our ships were dead and beaten that had never feared a foe.
The winds becalmed around us cared for no cannon ball;
They locked us in the harbour and would not let us go.
On the nineteenth of October, by eleven of the clock,
The sky turned black as midnight and a sudden storm came on--
Awful and sudden--and the cables felt the shock;
Our anchors they all broke away and every sheet was gone.
The guns fired off amid the strife, but little hope had we;
The billows broke above the ship and left us all below.
The crew with one consent cried 'Bear further out to sea,'
But the waves obeyed no sailor's call, and we knew not where to go.
She foundered on a rock, while we clambered up the shrouds,
And staggered like a mountain drunk, wedged in the waves almost.
The red hot boiling billows foamed in the stooping clouds,
And in that fatal tempest the whole ship's crew were lost.
Have pity for poor mariners, ye landsmen, in a storm.
O think what they endure at sea while safe at home you stay.
All ye that sleep on beds at night in houses dry and warm,
O think upon the whole ship's crew, all lost at Bantry Bay.
John Clare's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Bantry Bay by John Clare )
The Road Not Taken
If You Forget Me
Still I Rise
Edgar Allan Poe
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
William Ernest Henley
Did you read them?
- Do No Wrong, Terence G. Craddock
- Is poet, gajanan mishra
- It just is (Spoken word poem), Fiona McCullough
- गोरबो इसिँनिफ्राइ -72, Ronjoy Brahma
- Decoys, Birgitta Heikka
- Which Stones Cast Leave Permanent Scares?, Terence G. Craddock
- Tranquil Place, Tirupathi Chandrupatla
- Qualified Candidates For Euthanasia, Terence G. Craddock
- गोरबो इसिँनिफ्राइ -71, Ronjoy Brahma
- City Workers, RoseAnn V. Shawiak