The Fading Skiff
The moon hung low 'mid clouds enshrined,
The waves caught in its sheen,
Dashed up the rugged cliffs; the sky
Wore a mysterious mien.
I watched a skiff, a fragile skiff,
From out my window's height,
Whose shad'wy gliding seemed attuned
To that enchanted night.
He did not know that I was there
To soothe my soul's unrest;
I watched the flutter of the sails,
Far down the starry west,
And felt my heart in unison
Keep flutt'ring with its pain;
Yet why uplift my dreary plaint,
Does the sweet moon complain?
He went to meet her in the town,
Grand Sybil, proud and fair.
He did not know that he had left--
Beside his raven hair--
Strange yearnings in a maiden's heart,--
A fisher maiden she.
But ah! alas! he could not know,
To sail away from me.
He said my eyes were sapphires rare,
He called my hair bright gold;
Then left me with this aching pain,
And the great world so cold.
Yet why complain? Is it not best
To have Love's gracious boon
E'en for awhile? I cannot tell:
What think'st thou, silver moon?