Soothed by the murmurs on the sea-beat shore,
His dun-grey plumage floating to the gale,
The curlew blends his melancholy wail
With those hoarse sounds the rushing waters pour.
Like thee, congenial bird! my steps explore
The bleak lone sea-beach, or the rocky dale,
And shuns the orange bower, the myrtle vale,
Whose gay luxuriance suits my soul no more.
I love the ocean's broad expanse, when dressed
In limpid clearness, or when the tempests blow;
When the smooth currents on its placid breast
Flow calm as my past moments used to flow;
Or, when its troubled waters refuse to rest,
And seem the symbol of my present woe.
Helen Maria Williams (1762-1827)
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