I stood by the shore at the death of day,

As the sun sank flaming red;

And the face of the waters that spread away

Was as gray as the face of the dead.

And I heard the cry of the wanton sea

And the moan of the wailing wind;

For love’s sweet pain in his heart had he,

But the gray old sea had sinned.

The wind was young and the sea was old,

But their cries went up together;

The wind was warm and the sea was cold,

For age makes wintry weather.

So they cried aloud and they wept amain,

Till the sky grew dark to hear it;

And out of its folds crept the misty rain,

In its shroud, like a troubled spirit.


Paul Laurence Dunbar

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