A Parable of Immortality

by Henry Van Dyke


I am standing upon the seashore.

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,

and I stand and watch until at last she hangs

like a speck of white cloud

just where the sea and sky come down

to mingle with each other.

Then someone at my side says,

“There she goes!”


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 just as able to bear her load of living freight

to the place of destination.


Her diminished size is in me, not in her.


And just at the moment

when someone at my side says,

“There she goes!”

there are other eyes watching her coming…

and other voices ready to take up the glad shout…


“Here she comes!”


About psychopompkaleidoscope

Is a mortal who will not live forever.
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