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Subject - Sea & Sailing

Who can fail to be moved by a visit to the sea? Calming, gentle and yet a raging torrent at times; these poems reflect the diverse ways of sea, perhaps giving us a glimpse at that quality that affects us so. We've highlighted a few here by Masefield, but this collection contains many of his works including some good longer ones such as The Wanderer, Dauber.

Poetry is the journal of a sea animal living on land, wanting to fly the air. - Carl Sandburg


  1. Dover Beach by Matthew Arnold

    a dark love poem about the sea, mankind, and futile history

  2. To Sea! To Sea by Thomas Lovell Beddoes

    The anchor heaves, the ship swings free,
    The sails swell full. To sea, to sea!

  3. Lassitude by Mathilde Blind

    the sea can be hypnotic at times

  4. The Evening Darkens Over by Robert Bridges

    a storm over the ocean at sunset

  5. Ye Mariners of England by Thomas Campbell

    Her march is o'er the mountain-waves,
    Her home is on the deep.

  6. A Nautical Ballad by Charles Edward Carryl

    a story about a most unusual sailing ship

  7. Ye Flags of Picadilly by Arthur Hugh Clough

    sometimes, you should have just stayed home

  8. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

    the ulimate sea story

  9. A Wet Sheet and a Flowing Sea by Allan Cunningham

    Our heritage the sea.

  10. The Pleasure Boat by Richard Henry Dana

    take a jaunt on the sea and find.....beauty

  11. The Sailor's Consolation by Charles Dibdin

    perhaps the sea is not so dangerous after all?

  12. I started Early by Emily Dickinson

    But no Man moved Me--till the Tide
    Went past my simple Shoe--

  13. The Convergence of the Twain by Thomas Hardy

    In memory of The Titanic

  14. Long island Sound by Emma Lazarus

    a pastoral description that may be a bit out of place now

  15. The Wreck of the Hesperus by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

    best be cautious, not proud, in dealing with the sea

  16. The Sound of the Sea by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

    ...foreshadowing and foreseeing
    Of things beyond our reason or control.

  17. The Tide Rises, The Tide Falls by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

    The little waves, with their soft, white hands,
    Efface the footprints in the sands

  18. Sea Fever by John Masefield

    the classic poem of longing for the sea

  19. Trade Winds by John Masefield

    the lure of the sea-wind

  20. Cargoes by John Masefield

    seafaring has lost its romance

  21. The Berg by Herman Melville

    an indifferent iceberg

  22. Columbus by Joaquin Miller

    He said, "Sail on! sail on! and on!"

  23. The Fighting Téméraire by Henry Newbolt
  24. Sailors for my Money by Martin Parker

    Give ear unto the sailor
    Who unto you will show
    His case, his case,
    Howe'er the wind doth blow.

  25. A Life on the Ocean Wave by Epes Sargent

    longing to be on the sea

  26. Full Fathom Five by William Shakespeare

    from The Tempest

  27. The Lifeboat by George R. Sims

    We launched the boat in the tempest, though death was the goal in view
    And never a one but doubted if the craft could live it through;

  28. Phantoms All by Harrient Prescott Spofford
  29. Before the Squall by Arthur Symons
  30. Crossing the Bar by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

    sailing as a metaphor for life (and death)

  31. Break, Break, Break by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

    the memories evoked by the sea

  32. On the Verge by William Winter

    Ah, God receive, on shores of light,
    The shattered ship that sails to-night!

  33. With ships the sea was sprinkled by William Wordsworth

    one proud vessel outshines all the others; where is She going?

The subject indexes are a wonderful way to browse Poets' Corner, leading you to works you might not find any other way. I hope also that they can help the site to seem less overwhelming than it might at first. If you have suggestions or comments about the Subject Indicies please contact Jon Lachelt.

The quotes from Carl Sandburg on the heading of some of the subject pages are from his book of poems, Good Morning America.

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