Wednesday, July 20, 2011

I must go down to the sea.....

We are in the middle of a sweltering heatwave, and any kind of body of water is welcome, as was the lakeside visit this past weekend. Thank you Chrissie! But it has been years and years since I have seen the ocean, and out of curiosity I checked out some East Coastline views via Google Street-view - which is so much fun. And so, a little wistfully, during my lunch-break at work, I travel along the ocean and seaside roads. This view in particular struck me. Perhaps it is the anticipation of actually seeing the ocean in full - the vast expanse to cross over - and then - finally - there it is.

I Must Go Down to the Sea by John Masefield

I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel's kick and the wind's song and the white sail's shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea's face and a grey dawn breaking.

I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.

I must go down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull's way and the whale's way where the wind's like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover,
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick's over.


  1. Isn't Google Streetview a wonder?
    Hope you're keeping cool in this heatwave.

  2. MARVELLOUS poem. But you know what? I can deny the call. Watch me! Reason: >>>seasick<<<< So I prefer to stay on-shore. Or actually go in the stuff. Boats? Not so much. But what words that man Masefield marshaled! Thank you!

  3. Anonymous6:26 PM

    I couldn't imagine not being able to go to the seaside whenever I felt the need. Something about it heals me...maybe it's because I'm a piscean. I live bang in the middle of the UK...but am very lucky I know, with England being so small...I can get to beautiful coastlines in less than two hours.