One moment the boy, as he wander’d by night
Where the far spreading foam in the moonbeam was white,
One moment he caught on the breath of the breeze
The voice of the sisters that sing in the seas.
One moment, no more: though the boy linger’d long,
No more might he hear of the mermaidens’ song,
But the pine-woods behind him moan’d low from the land,
And the ripple gush’d soft at his feet on the sand.
Yet or ever they ceas’d, the strange sound of their joy
Had lighted a light in the breast of the boy:
And the seeds of a wonder, a splendor to be
Had been breath’d through his soul from the songs of the sea.
— Ernest Myers, born this day in 1844