Once, before you turn to sleep,
Breathe a message through the night.
Never doubt that they’ll receive it.
Send it, once, and you’ll believe it.
Wrecks that burn against the stars,
Decks where death is wallowing green,
Snare the breath among their spars,
Hear the flickering threads between,
Quick, through all the storms that blind them,
Quick with worlds that rush to find them.
Think you those aerial wires
Whisper more than spirits may ?
Think you that our strong desires
Touch no distance when we pray ?
Think you that no wings are flying
‘Twixt the living and the dying ?
Inland, here, upon your knees,
You shall breathe from urgent lips,
Round the ships that guard your seas,
Fleet on fleet of angel ships ;
Yea, the guarded may so bless them .
That no terrors can distress them.
You shall guide the darkling prow,
Kneeling thus-and far inland-
You shall touch the storm-beat brow
Gently as a spirit-hand.
Even a blindfold prayer may speed them,
And a little child may lead them.