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Cyclopdia of English Poetry

Cover Cyclopdia of English Poetry
Cyclopdia of English Poetry
Thomas Campbell
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But if, determined by the will of Heaven, Our helpless bark at last ashore is driven, These counsels follow'd, from the wat'ry grave Our floating sailors in the surf may save.
And first let all our axes be secured, To cut the masts and rigging from aboard. Then to the quarters bind each plank and oar, To float between the vessel and the shore. The longest cordage too must be convey'd On deck, and to the weather rails belay'd. So they who haply reach alive the land, Th' extended lines may fasten
... on the strand. Whene'er loud thundering on the leeward shore, While yet aloof we hear the breakers roar, Thus for the terrible event prepared, Brace fore and aft to starboard every yard. So shall our masts swim lighter on the wave, And from the broken rocks our seamen save. Then westward turn the stem, that every mast May shoreward fall, when from the vessel cast. When o'er her side once more the billows bound, Ascend the rigging till she strikes the ground : And when you hear aloft the alarming shock That strikes her bottom on some pointed rock, The boldest of our sailors must descend, The dangerous business of the deck to tend ; Then each, secured by some convenient cord, Should cut the shrouds and rigging from the board.

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Cyclopdia of English Poetry
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