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

Robert Stephen Hawker 1804–75

“Pater Vester Pascit Illa”

OUR bark is on the waters: wide around

The wandering wave; above, the lonely sky.

Hush! a young sea-bird floats, and that quick cry

Shrieks to the levell’d weapon’s echoing sound,

Grasps its lank wing, and on, with reckless bound!

Yet, creature of the surf, a sheltering breast

To-night shall haunt in vain thy far-off nest,

A call unanswer’d search the rocky ground.

Lord of leviathan! when Ocean heard

Thy gathering voice, and sought his native breeze;

When whales first plunged with life, and the proud deep

Felt unborn tempests heave in troubled sleep;

Thou didst provide, e’en for this nameless bird,

Home, and a natural love, amid the surging seas.