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44 STEVENSON'S POEMS
I AM LIKE ONE THAT FOR LONG DAYS HAD SATE
I AM like one. that for long days had sate, With seaward eyes set keen against the gale, On some lone foreland, watching sail by sail,
The portbound ships for one ship that was late;
And sail by sail, his heart burned up with joy, And cruelly was quenched, until at last One ship, the looked-for pennant at its mast,
Bore gaily, and dropt safely past the buoy;
And lo ! the loved one was not thereŚwas dead.
Then would he watch no more; no more the sea With myriad vessels, sail by sail, perplex
His eyes and mock his longing. Weary head,
Take now thy rest; eyes, close; for no more me Shall hopes untried elate, or ruined vex.
For thus on love I waited; thus for love Strained all my senses eagerly and long; Thus for her coming ever trimmed niy song ;
Till in the far skies coloured as a dove,
A bird gold-coloured flickered far and fled Over the pathless waterwaste for me ;
^ And with spread hands I watched the bright bird flee