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The Wanderer
by Eugene Field (1850-1895)

Upon a mountain height, far from the sea,
         I found a shell,
And to my listening ear the lonely thing
Ever a song of ocean seemed to sing,
         Ever a tale of ocean seemed to tell.

How came the shell upon that mountain height?
         Ah, who can say
Whether there dropped by some too careless hand,
Or whether there cast when Ocean swept the Land,
         Ere the Eternal had ordained the Day?

Strange, was it not? Far from its native deep,
         One song it sang,---
Sang of the awful mysteries of the tide,
Sang of the misty sea, profound and wide,---
         Ever with echoes of the ocean rang.

And as the shell upon the mountain height
         Sings of the sea,
So do I ever, leagues and leagues away,---
So do I ever, wandering where I may,---
          Sing, O my home! sing, O my home! of thee.

1883.

 

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