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5.

AS I sit with others, at a great feast, suddenly, while
the music is playing,
To my mind, (whence it comes I know not,) spectral,
in mist, of a wreck at sea,
Of the flower of the marine science of fifty genera-
tions, foundered off the Northeast coast, and
going down—Of the steamship Arctic going
down,
Of the veiled tableau—Women gathered together
on deck, pale, heroic, waiting the moment that
draws so close—O the moment!


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O the huge sob—A few bubbles—the white foam
spirting up—And then the women gone,
Sinking there, while the passionless wet flows on—
And I now pondering, Are those women indeed
gone?
Are Souls drowned and destroyed so?
Is only matter triumphant?

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