Off Rivière-du-Loup (Poem by Duncan Campbell Scott)

Suggested Poem


Off Rivière-du-Loup
By Duncan Campbell Scott


O ship incoming from the sea
    With all your cloudy tower of sail,
Dashing the water to the lee,
    And leaning grandly to the gale;

The sunset pageant in the west
    Has filled your canvas curves with rose,
And jewelled every toppling crest
    That crashes into silver snows!

You know the joy of coming home,
    After long leagues to France or Spain;
You feel the clear Canadian foam
    And the gulf water heave again.

Between these sombre purple hills
    That cool the sunset’s molten bars,
You will go on as the wind wills,
    Beneath the river’s roof of stars.

You will toss onward toward the lights
    That spangle over the lonely pier,
By hamlets glimmering on the heights,
    By level islands black and clear.

You will go on beyond the tide,
    Through brimming plains of olive sedge,
Through paler shallows light and wide,
    The rapids piled along the ledge.

At evening off some reedy bay
    You will swing slowly on your chain,
And catch the scent of dewy hay,
    Soft blowing from the pleasant plain.

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