The foghorns echo on the gliding rain,
The cold sea sleeps, the sails droop, and the sun
Glimmers stone-cold; as though the storms in vain
Had died and left their weary work undone:
And miserable, lone,
The hidden land breathes and is lost again.
Chill from the creaking spars the vapour drips,
Stiff hang the ropes; and through the dimness move
The slow, wet, melancholy-bleating ships,
Mourning the days of tempest when they strove.
Not theirs is now the victor's grim delight,
Not now the triumph over wind and sea;
Sadly they creep amidst the creeping white,
Sadly they wander, drifting helplessly;
And round the savage Horn
Groping, afraid, on windless tides are borne.
And in the silence suddenly puffs the whale;
Swift round and round the scared Cape Pigeons fly:
The lurking winter has forgot the gale,
But under the sad sky
A pallid terror broods, and haunts the shaking sail.