New Year's Day--And Every Day

A poem by William Arthur Dunkerley

Each man is Captain of his Soul,
And each man his own Crew,
But the Pilot knows the Unknown Seas,
And He will bring us through.


We break new seas to-day,--
Our eager keels quest unaccustomed waters,
And, from the vast uncharted waste in front,
The mystic circles leap
To greet our prows with mightiest possibilities;
Bringing us--what?
--Dread shoals and shifting banks?
--And calms and storms?
--And clouds and biting gales?
--And wreck and loss?
--And valiant fighting-times?
And, maybe, Death!--and so, the Larger Life!

For should the Pilot deem it best
To cut the voyage short,
He sees beyond the sky-line, and
He'll bring us into Port.

And, maybe, Life,--Life on a bounding tide,
And chance of glorious deeds;--
Of help swift-born to drowning mariners;
Of cheer to ships dismasted in the gale;
Of succours given unasked and joyfully;
Of mighty service to all needy souls.

So--Ho for the Pilot's orders,
Whatever course He makes!
For He sees beyond the sky-line,
And He never makes mistakes.

And, maybe, Golden Days,
Full freighted with delight!
--And wide free seas of unimagined bliss,
--And Treasure Isles, and Kingdoms to be won,
--And Undiscovered Countries, and New Kin.

For each man captains his own Soul,
And chooses his own Crew,
But the Pilot knows the Unknown Seas,
And He will bring us through.

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