Ship of Ships
It is sinking
The chuggings of
Grind and wheeze.
Rowings are heard
‘Gainst the waves.
Tempo setting in.
Lifeboats all dispatched.
But too few.
Friends call to each other
Cross the darkness.
Deck fires paint a cracked
Flash on the brine.
Great ship lists
To the fore.
Stragglers and those resigned
Sit at lounge chairs,
“I love you” spoken.
One baleful voice
Cries through the fog
(As if alone, where
Crowds had just streamed,
I’m waiting for you.”
Clarifies the strains
Of small orchestra.
And this had been
The Ship of ships.
Frigid saline fingers
Thanking the ice;
Grabbing more and more
Of its girth.
Pulling it down.
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(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
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Edgar Allan Poe
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