Lighthouse Poetry

Written by Celia Thaxter, the daughter of a lighthouse keeper, this poem reflects on the challenges and triumphs of a keeper and his family in a remote location.

We’ll share historical details about American keepers and their families next week, but for today, enjoy a poetic piece.

The Watch of Boon Island

Afar and cold on the horizon’s rim

Loom the tall lighthouse, like a ghostly sign;

They sighed not as the shore behind grew dim – 

A joy they bore across the brine.

Boon Island Light

They gained the barren rock, and made their home

Among the wild waves and the sea-birds wild;

The wintry winds blew fierce across the foam,

But in each other’s eyes they looked and smiled.

Aloft the lighthouse sent its warnings wide,

Fed by their faithful hands; and ships in sight

With joy behold it, and on land men cried,

“Look, clear and steady burns Boon Island light.”

And while they trimmed the lamp with busy hands,

“Shine far and through the dark, sweet light,” they cried;

“Bring safely back the sailors from all lands

To waiting love – wife, mother, sister, bride!”

Your Historian,

Miss Sarah

P.S. Is there another poem featuring a lighthouse that you like? Tell us in a comment…


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