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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 14, Issue 4 (July 1, 1939)

Out of the Past

Out of the Past.

I saw them through the shadowy wood,
They beached their boat, and strangely stood.
In the pale shining of the moon,
Their sword-hilts gleamed as bright as noon.
So strange and silent did they stand,
Beholding all the sleeping land,
The pasture country, white as snow;
The sea, and port, and ships that go
To distant lands; the city still
As midnight there beneath her hill.
The leader doffed his hat, and stood
As though he found it very good.
So still they stood, still as a tree,
Until I, too, began to see
The whole land wrapped in sombre bush,
Enclothed in dark primeval hush,
And lying from out the rippled sand
The ship “Endeavour” at the strand.
So small a ship, and yet sublime,
To sail the long sea-roads of Time!
But while I saw, they turned away,
The east was grey with coming day,
And as they rowed across the sea
No sound of oars came back to me.

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