The Ocean Strand

by


The Ocean Strand is featured in Lewis's poetry collection, Spirits in Bondage (1919), his first published book.
An illustration for the story The Ocean Strand by the author C.S. Lewis
Walter Crane, Neptune's Horses, 1910
An illustration for the story The Ocean Strand by the author C.S. Lewis
Walter Crane, Neptune's Horses, 1910
An illustration for the story The Ocean Strand by the author C.S. Lewis
O leave the labouring roadways of the town,
     The shifting faces and the changeful hue
     Of markets, and broad echoing streets that drown
     The heart's own silent music. Though they too
     Sing in their proper rhythm, and still delight
     The friendly ear that loves warm human kind,
     Yet it is good to leave them all behind,
     Now when from lily dawn to purple night
     Summer is queen,
     Summer is queen in all the happy land.
     Far, far away among the valleys green
     Let us go forth and wander hand in hand
     Beyond those solemn hills that we have seen
     So often welcome home the falling sun
     Into their cloudy peaks when day was done—
     Beyond them till we find the ocean strand
     And hear the great waves run,
     With the waste song whose melodies I'd follow
     And weary not for many a summer day,
     Born of the vaulted breakers arching hollow
     Before they flash and scatter into spray,
     On, if we should be weary of their play
     Then I would lead you further into land
     Where, with their ragged walls, the stately rocks
     Shunt in smooth courts and paved with quiet sand
     To silence dedicate. The sea-god's flocks
     Have rested here, and mortal eyes have seen
     By great adventure at the dead of noon
     A lonely nereid drowsing half a-swoon
     Buried beneath her dark and dripping locks.

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