Saturday, November 28, 2015

The Kestrel, On Board Which the Reader Will in Imagination Transport Himself, Was a Very Handsomely-Built Craft (1863)

¶ The day was delicious, and the sun had not yet commenced to parch the town and citizens, and we had a pleasant little breeze. ¶ Before us was the vast Pacific, where sky and water kiss each other; and the little white-sailed bark lies in the centre of the motionless expanse, with canvas flapping from the long yards, and pitch streaming down her black hull, while the tropical sun beams fiercely over head, and the shark follows day after day, and the flying fish darts up into the still air, and the dolphin swims round and round, and the stately albatross rises on the long rolling swell: or perchance the scene changes, and a long low hull, from which arise two tall spars destitute of canvas is madly hurled along, and the waters burst over her side and run through the scupper holes to leeward; and the terrified mariners, lashed to the shrouds. gaze around while the storm-fiend exults in black waves and the sombre sky.

 “The Perilous Adventures of Stephen Houston, M.D., as Related by Himself,” The Boy’s Yearly Book, Being the Twelve Numbers of the Boy’s Penny Magazine (January – December 1863): 267.