O Captain!

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O captain, my captain, the ship is sinking! My ears are ringing! Can you still guide us back home?

And captain, my captain, your men are dying! Why are you crying for one so many miles away?

You said, "Son, she left me long ago, and I'm afraid that I now know there's nothing for me here on land or air or sea, and in the waves, I've seen her eyes, and those eyes, how I've watched them die in nightmares, weeping as she's swept away from me. Now the creaking of the boards as we're blown further off of our course brings me the feeling that she's gone further away, so raise the masts, this wretched sea has no hope of ever stopping me from finding her someday."

O captain, my captain, the mast is ashes! The sky is crashes! Don't let us die out here alone.

And captain, if we set sail for the bottom of the sea, who'll be there to wipe salt from the eyes of the one I love, and when she dies, will she still be there by the shores waiting for me?

You said, "There's more at work than you and I," and then you looked me in the eye, said, "I've been waiting all of my life for this day!" You drifted back to long ago, said, "Son, there's something you should know: a captain's heart's not something easily-betrayed. but when she died, I took a vow that I'd get back to her somehow, and in this storm, I think I've finally found a way.So raise the masts, this wretched sea has no hope of ever stopping me from finding her someday!"

My captain, was it you or I that hoped our voyage soon would fail? We left home in a paper ship with all our pages raised as sails. The waves were colder than her touch, the waves were colder than my heart. The sky was ink I'd set adrift to share all my most secret parts.

My love, I left you long ago, I harbored heart and hate, and hoped that I'd find something, here, alone, out in the sea, but in the waves I saw your eyes, and those eyes, how they've been my life since the first time they peered across the way at me. Now the breaking of the boards, it brings me closer, still, towards the feeling that you'll never get to hear me say: "You, love, are all my live and dreams, the prettiest lass I've ever seen; the one I'd want most by my side when I get pulled down by the tide; before I go, I hope you know that I will always love you, so don't let this last waterlogged note rob you of all your heart and hope of finding me someday."


from A Waterlogged Letter, released July 2, 2013



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