Dead Calm: Noon.
VAST, vast, immeasurably vast, thy dreadful peace,
When heaving with slow mighty breath thou
In utter rest, and dost thy ministering winds
So that with folded wings they too subside,
Floating through hollow spaces, though the highest
Stirs his long tremulous pinions when thou sighest!
Then in thy soul, that doth in fathomless depths abide.
All wild desires and turbulent longings cease—
Profound, immeasurable then, thy dreadful peace!
Dead Calm: Midnight.
But in thy noon of night, serene as death, when under
The terrible silence of that arched dome,
Not a lost whisper ev’n of thy wandering thunder
Ascends like the spiral smoke of perishing flame,
Nor dying wave on thy swart bosom sinks in foam-
Then, then the world is thine, thy heritage, thy home!
What then for thee, O Sea, thou Terror! Or what Name
To call thee by, thou Sphinx, thou Mystery, thou Wonder,—
Above thou art Living Death, Oblivion under!
Sharp, William. “Oceanus.” The Evergreen: A Northern Seasonal, vol. 3, Summer 1896, p. 31. Evergreen Digital Edition, edited by Lorraine Janzen Kooistra, 2016-2018. Yellow Nineties 2.0, General Editor Lorraine Janzen Kooistra, Ryerson University Centre for Digital Humanities, 2019. https://1890s.ca/egv3_sharp_oceanus/