Thomas Edward Brown

(1830-1897 / England)

Land, Ho!


I know ’tis but a loom of land,
Yet is it land, and so I will rejoice,
I know I cannot hear His voice
Upon the shore, nor see Him stand;
Yet is it land, ho! land.

The land! the land! the lovely land!
‘Far off,’ dost say? Far off—ah, blessèd home!
Farewell! farewell! thou salt sea-foam!
Ah, keel upon the silver sand—
Land, ho! land.

You cannot see the land, my land,
You cannot see, and yet the land is there—
My land, my land, through murky air—
I did not say ’twas close at hand—
But—land, ho! land.

Dost hear the bells of my sweet land,
Dost hear the kine, dost hear the merry birds?
No voice, ’tis true, no spoken words,
No tongue that thou may’st understand—
Yet is it land, ho! land.

It’s clad in purple mist, my land,
In regal robe it is apparellèd,
A crown is set upon its head,
And on its breast a golden band—
Land, ho! land.

Dost wonder that I long for land?
My land is not a land as others are—
Upon its crest there beams a star,
And lilies grow upon the strand—
Land, ho! land.

Give me the helm! there is the land!
Ha! lusty mariners, she takes the breeze!
And what my spirit sees it sees—
Leap, bark, as leaps the thunderbrand—
Land, ho! land.

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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