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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts 1860–1943

Epitaph for a Sailor Buried Ashore


HE who but yesterday would roam

Careless as clouds and currents range,

In homeless wandering most at home,

Inhabiter of change;

Who wooed the west to win the east,

And named the stars of north and south,

And felt the zest of Freedom’s feast

Familiar in his mouth;

Who found a faith in stranger speech,

And fellowship in foreign hands,

And had within his eager reach

The relish of all lands—

How circumscribed a plot of earth

Keeps now his restless footsteps still,

Whose wish was wide as ocean’s girth,

Whose will the water’s will!