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When, for the crowning vernal sweet,
Round her gentle, happy face,
As lightly blew the veering wind, They touched her cheeks, or waved behind,
Unbound, unbraided, and unlooped; Or when to tie her shoe she stooped, Below her chin the half-curls drooped,
And veiled the pilot's daughter.
Rising, she tossed them gayly back, With gesture infantine and brief, To fall around as soft a neck
As the wild-rose's leaf. Her Sunday frock of lilae shade (That choicest tint) was neatly made, And not too long to hide from view The stout but noway clumsy shoe, And stockings' smoothly-fitting blue,
That graced the pilot's daughter.
With look half timid and half droll, And then with slightly downcast
And blush that outward softly stole, Unless it were the skies
Whose sun-ray shifted on her cheek, She turned when I began to speak; But 'twas a brightness all her own That in her firm light step was
And the clear cadence of her tone; The pilot's lovely daughter.
Were it my lot (the sudden wish)
To hand a pilot's oar and sail, Or haul the dripping moonlight mesh, Spangled with herring-scale; By dying stars, how sweet 'twould be, And dawn-blow freshening the sea, With weary, cheery pull to shore, To gain my cottage home once more, And clasp, before I reach the door,
My love, the pilot's daughter.
This element beside my feet
Allures, a tepid wine of gold; One touch, one taste, dispels the cheat
'Tis salt and nipping cold: A fisher's hut, the scene perforce