My Ships

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by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

   If all the ships I have at sea
   Should come a-sailing home to me,
   Ah, well! the harbour could not hold
   So many sails as there would be
   If all my ships came in from sea.

   If half my ships came home from sea,
   And brought their precious freight to me,
   Ah, well! I should have wealth as great
   As any king who sits in state—
   So rich the treasures that would be
   In half my ships now out at sea.

   If just one ship I have at sea
   Should come a-sailing home to me,
   Ah, well! the storm-clouds then might frown
   For if the others all went down,
   Still rich and proud and glad I’d be
   If that one ship came back to me.

   If that one ship went down at sea,
   And all the others came to me,
   Weighed down with gems and wealth untold,
   With glory, honours, riches, gold,
   The poorest soul on earth I’d be
   If that one ship came not to me.

   O skies, be calm! O winds, blow free—
   Blow all my ships safe home to me!
   But if thou sendest some a-wrack,
   To never more come sailing back,
   Send any—all that skim the sea,
   But bring my love-ship home to me.

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

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