Lone bird, upon yon sacred sea,
Dimpling with solitary breast
The silent wave of Galilee,
Where shall thine oary foot find rest?
Hast thou a home mid rock or reed
Of this most desolate domain
Where not one ibex dares to feed
Nor Arab tent imprints the plain
What know st thou of Bethsaida's gate
Or old Chorazin's desert bound.
What heed st thou of Capernaum's fate,
Whose shapeless ruins throng around?
Once, when the tempest's wing was dark,
A sleeper rose and calm'd the sea,
And snatch'd from death the fragile bark—
Here was the spot, but who was he?
He heard the surge impetuous roar,
And trod sublime its wildest crest,—
Redeemer! was yon watery floor
Thus by thy glorious feet impress'd?
Oh, when each earthly hope and fear,
Each fleeting loss, each fancied gain,
Shall to our death-dimm'd sight appear
Like the lost cities of the plain.
Then may the soul, enslaved bo more,
Launch calmly on salvation's sea,
And part from time's receding shore,
Lone, peaceful pelican! like thee.