The Circle of Affection and Other Pieces in Prose and Verse

by Duncan Campbell Scott


 

THE SEA-WITCH


 

“LOVE LEAVE ME, let me go
        I am a sailor bold,” said he.
“Nay, for I am a lonely maid,
Tell me how the winds blow,
        Tell me a tale of the sea.”
5

“My good ship rides before the town,
        I am sailor bold,” said he.
“Teach me the way of the wind with the wave
Stay with me till the sun goes down,
        Tell me a tale of the sea.”
10

“My crew are waiting the turn of the tide,
        I am a sailor bold,” said he.
“The wave with the wind will turn with the hour,
Let them whistle and let them bide,
        Tell me a tale of the sea.”
15

“I love the long wind and the plunging wave,
        I am a sailor bold,” said he.
“My song with the love of the wave and the wind
Has woven a spell as strong as the grave,
        Tell me a tale of the sea.”
20

“You are no witch but a maid to wed,
        I am a sailor bold,” said he.
“Nay, you are withered and white and cold,
Your ship has rotted, your men are dead,
        Tell me a tale of the sea.”
25

To a ghostly whisper his words are thinned,
        “I am a sailor bold,” says he.
Her eyes are dancing with sea-green light,
She sings with the voice of the wave and the wind,
        “Tell me a tale of the sea.”
30