When the decks were very silent
And the lights along the beach
Flared and flickered in the nightwinds
Blowing down the open reach—
When the blazing fires before us
Shewed the toilers on their ships
Then it was my heart found utterance
Thro' the channel of my lips
Then it was I told you all things
In the pallid moon 's eclipse
While the harbour breeze sighed softly
In the rigging of the ships.
From the cynical half speeches,
In the sunlight on the Bay,
To the whispers in the Harbour
What a gulf between them lay.
From the time I met you lightly
Half in pleasure, half in scorn
To the time we watched the night-jar
And I knew my love was born.
I have merited derision
You were right to give me scorn.
But it may be—Since at first
Love was not but rather scorn,
Since we knew the best and worst
Of each other truthfully
Long before our Love was born
It may be that for a year
We shall hold each other dear,
Till remembrance grows less clear
Till our idyl of the sea
Is a misty memory.
And we murmur—Was it so
We two loved so long ago.
For the devil that was in your heart—called out to the devil in mine
And the stars were silent above, as the steamers furrowed the sea—
And the sound of our voices was drowned in the noise of the troubled brine
And our faces were shrouded from sight by the night's obscurity.