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  • POET: Henry Van Dyke (7/28/2005 4:19:00 PM)

    To Tess A: We are reading this same poem at my father-in-law's memorial service. I was searching for info on Henry van Dyke and whether he actually wrote this poem. Here it is:

    I am standing upon the sea shore.
    A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the
    morning breeze and starts for the blue ocean.
    She is an object of beauty and strength.
    I stand and watch her until at length she hangs
    like a speck of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.

    Then someone at my side says; “There, she is gone! ” “Gone where? ” Gone from my sight.
    That is all.
    She is just as large in mast and hull and spar as she was when she left my side and she is just as able to bear her load of living freight to her destined port.

    Her diminished size is in me, not in her.
    And just at that moment when someone at my side says, “There, she is gone! ”
    There are other eyes watching her and other voices ready to take up the glad shout,
    “Here she comes! ”
    And that is dying.

    Henry Van Dyke

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