In Memoriam

This is a poem from the book called “The Last Days of Titanic” published in 1912 by Roberts Rinehart. The poem was written by Father Browne (who left Titanic when she docked in Ireland ). It’s been my favorite poem for about as long as I can remember.

April 15th,1912

A ship rode forth on the Noonday tide
Rode forth to the open sea
and high sun shone on the good ship’s side,
And all seemed gladness, and hope,and pride
For the gallant sight was she.

For the crew was strong,and the captain brave
And never a fear had they,
Never a thought for the turbulent wave,
Never a dread of a watery grave,
Nor dreams of a fateful day.

So the ship sailed on, and the voices strong
Sang sweet on the morning air,
And the glad notes billowed the shore along,
they drifted and died, till the Sailors’ song
Was soft as a whispered prayer

And all seemed gladness,and hope ,and pride
As far as the eye could see,
For where was the foe that could pierce her side,
Or where in the Ocean depths could hide,
A mightier power then she?

But far to the North, in the frozen zone
Where the Ice King holds his sway,
Full many a berg, like the monarch’s throne
Or castle that fabled princes own
Gleamed white neath the Sun’s bright ray

When the challenge came on the whisp’ring air
It passed like a fleeting breath,
But it roused a king in his Arctic lair,
And waked what vengeance was sleeping there,
The vengeance of Doom and Death

But heedless and gay o’er the sunlit waves
The vessel all lightly bore,
Till the distant coast with its rocks and caves,
And the land that the Western Ocean laves,
Were seen from her decks no more

When Evening came with the waning light,
And shrouded the rolling deep,
For never a moment she stayed her flight,
Adown the path of the moonbeams bright,
Though Heaven was wrapped in sleep.

Another dawn with its liquid gold
Gilded the Eastern sky
Lighting the ship so fair, so bold
that sped its way o’er the Ocean old,
Nor recked of danger nigh….

And noonday came, when the burning sun
Rifted the realms of snow
And burst the fetters the Ice had spun
And shattered the towers that Cold had won,
Breaking the great Ice-flow

Till over the ocean’s heaving swells,
Like ghosts in the twilight gloom,
The great bergs glided with purpose fell
Minding the quest of their Monarch well,
The quest of Revenge and Doom

The deeper night with it slow advance
Bids even the winds to cease,
No moonbeams bright on the waters dance
But all lie still in a starry trance
And the Ocean sleeps in peace

A shuddering gasp o’er the resting deep!
A wail from the silent sea!
Tis heard where the stars their lone watch keep
Tis heard in the grave where the dead men sleep,
mindful of human glee…

The Springtime dawn with its rosy light
See naught but the waves’ wild flow
For under the veil of the moonless night
When the sea was still and the stars were bright
The Ice King had slain his foe.

The Ship that rode on noonday tide
Rode forth to open sea,
But gone are the gladness, and hope, and pride
For the Northern Ocean’s depths could hide
A mightier power than she

*I’ll get back to posts on general writing goodness tomorrow, I promise. And, hey, maybe I’ll share some big big news over coffee.*


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