My Love is Mine

Sea Shanties are popular now, informs the New York entertainment website Vulture and other pop culture sites.  I guess I’m ahead of the curve, although in our house, we call them “Pirate Songs” because it sounds cooler.

            Sea Shanties have romance, nostalgia, luck, and grit. The unified chorus of a sea shanty is the song of men working together to complete the manual labor of hauling lines or raising anchor.  Purists differentiate these work songs from other songs of the sea.

            Even a familiar sea could turn enemy with the shift of a wind. It was hard, precarious work.   No wonder the sea becomes personified. Survival is a battle of wills. 

            Here’s a poem for ye then, me laddies –n- lasses, neither shanty nor sea song, but the determined declaration to hold onto love no matter the fiercest storm.

Burst, O sea, on the sands of the shore!
 Scream aloud. Fling up your wild arms white.
 Grovel, and shriek to the strong wind's roar; 
Peal up your cry through the pitiless night.
 Blow, vast gale, over field and bay;
 Over holt and hill whirl the rain and brine.
 Ruin and wreck till returns the day;
 Break, and be broken. -- My love is mine.

“A Storm Song” poem [excerpt] by William Wilkins, 1852- 1912 (public domain).

In Ocean City, MD, as a hurricane starts to move in; my triumph over the seas 😉
Complete poem: 
Toss, tight boat, by the foam covered bar;
Dip deep down in the jaws of the brine.
Fly, dark rack, across moon and star,
Fly, and fly past. -- My love is mine.
Storm-stricken cedars, reel on the height;
Hurled back, shudder, and pitch to the wind.
Swept by the beam of the moon's pale light,
Lash, and loom grandly. -- My love is kind.

Burst, O sea, on the sands of the shore!
Scream aloud. Fling up your wild arms white.
Grovel, and shriek to the strong wind's roar;
Peal up your cry through the pitiless night.
Blow, vast gale, over field and bay;
Over holt and hill whirl the rain and brine.
Ruin and wreck till returns the day;
Break, and be broken. -- My love is mine.

Photos (other than that of the author) courtesy of Pixabay.

More Info on Sea Shanties:

A Brief History of Sea Shanties

The History of Sea Shanties – and Why They’re Such a Hit in 2021

Sea Shanties

Shanties and Sea Songs


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