Wanderers Along The Shoreline
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The following verse was reconstructed from fragments of Ballads of The Stranded Sailors, a 15th century manuscript in both Shirazi Persian and Old Portuguese. The fragments were discovered in the ruins of Kaole near Bagmoyo, Tanzania.

We will sail and we will roll
And skim across the waves
many coloured, multiplied
The excess of the globe
Though majesties would fling us forth
With arcane plots to start
Yet mystery is our true mother
And sea-paths tangle thought

And where we fold our weary wings
Upon the cliff or dune
The anchor's rusted over now
The logbook gathers dust
And so we come to think of home
A place of foreign clime
Till all the lineage of our past
Is full mythologised

No pious priest nor mission bell
Can long define our song
Our freedom somehow perilous
To bland officialdom
The chains that bound have come undone
Like old surveyor's line
That lies forgotten under sand
For starry skies anew

Great gifts are half-remembered things
Our families are fraught
Like broken tiles that line the road
We wander ever on
And still we feel the comfort
Of new-made nursery rhymes
As if they showed eternity
Beyond our little lives

Stay a while, and listen
What was that ancient tune?
How can the night bird's cry resound
With memories long gone?
How can the ever circling sun
Seem always at our side
And why exotic summer nights
Gleam still with common stars?

An endless book unwrites me
Whose hand will never cease
And all the libraries that ever were
Could not contain this verse

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