Beyond control

The sea awoke at midnight from its sleep,
And round the pebbly beaches far and wide
I heard the first wave of the rising tide
Rush onward with uninterrupted sweep;
A voice out of the silence of the deep,
A sound mysteriously multiplied
As of a cataract from the mountain's side,
Or roar of winds upon a wooded steep.
So comes to us at times, from the unknown
And inaccessible solitudes of being,
The rushing of the sea-tides of the soul;
And inspirations, that we deem our own,
Are some divine foreshadowing and foreseeing
Of things beyond our reason or control

-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

In this poem Longfellow describes the sound of the sea as the waves lap against the shore and the tide rises. He compares the rush of the tide to rushes of inspiration people experience sometimes. He also suggests that those inspirations might be a way of divine "foreshadowing and foreseeing" as opposed to the regularity with which the tide rises. Just like the tide of the sea, the tide of the soul is beyond our control as well

Paiting William R Symonds

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