This song alludes to a well-known superstition among the young Hindoo girls. They make a little boat out of a cocoanut shell, place a small lamp and flowers within this tiny ark of the heart, and launch it upon the Ganges. If it float out of sight with its lamp still burning, the omen is prosperous: if it sinks, the love of which it questions, is ill fated.

Float on—float on—my haunted bark,
      Above the midnight tide;
      Bear softly o'er the waters dark
The hopes that with thee glide.

Float on—float on—thy freight is flowers,
      And every flower reveals
      The dreaming of my lonely hours,
The hope my spirit feels.

Float on—float on—thy shining lamp,
      The light of love, is there;
      If lost beneath the waters damp,
That love must then despair.

Float on—beneath the moonlight float,
      The sacred billows o'er:
      Ah, some kind spirit guards my boat,
For it has gain'd the shore.                  [304]


Landon, Latitia E. The Poetical Works of Miss Landon. Philadelphia: E.L. Cary and A. Hart, 1839. Hathi Trust Digital Library version of a copy in the New York Public Library. Web. 17 July 2020.

Last modified 18 July 2020