Research by Steven L. Brawley
Poems Penned by Jackie
Sea Joy (1939)
When I go down by the sandy shore
I can think of nothing I want more
Then to live by the booming blue sea
As the seagulls flutter round about me
I can run about - when the tide is out
With the wind and the sand and the sea all about
And the sea gulls are swirling and diving for fish
O - to live by the sea is my only wish.
I love the Autumn,
And yet I cannot say
All the thoughts and things
That make one feel this way.
I love walking on the angry shore,
To watch the angry sea;
Where summer people were before,
But now there’s only me.
I love wood fires at night
That have a ruddy glow.
I stare at the flames
And think of long ago.
I love the feeling down inside me
That says to run away
To come and be a gypsy
And laugh the gypsy way.
The tangy taste of apples,
The snowy mist at morn,
The wonderlust inside you
When you hear the huntsman’s horn.
Naustagia - that’s the Autumn,
Dreaming through September
Just a million lovely things
I always will remember.
Meanwhile in Massachusetts (1953)
Meanwhile in Massachusetts Jack Kennedy dreamed
Walking the shore by the Cape Cod Sea
Of all the things he was going to be.
He breathed in the tang of the New England fall
And back in his mind he pictured it all,
The burnished New England countryside
Names that a patriot says with pride
Concord and Lexington, Bunker Hill
Plymouth and Falmouth and Marstons Mill
Winthrop and Salem, Lowell, Revere
Quincy and Cambridge, Louisburg Square.
This was his heritage—this his share
Of dreams that a young man harks in the air.
The past reached out and tracked him now
He would heed that touch; he didn’t know how.
Part he must serve, a part he must lead
Both were his calling, both were his need.
Part he was of New England stock
As stubborn, close guarded as Plymouth Rock
He thought with his feet most firm on the ground
But his heart and his dreams were not earthbound
He would call new England his place and his creed
But part he was of an alien breed
Of a breed that had laughed on Irish hills
And heard the voice in Irish rills
The life of that green land danced in his blood
Tara, Killarney, a magical flood
That surged in the depth of his too proud heart
And spiked the punch of New England so tart
Men would call him thoughtful, sincere
They would not see through to the Last Cavalier
He turned on the beach and looked toward his house.
On a green lawn his white house stands
And the wind blows the sea grass low on the sands
There his brothers and sisters have laughed and played
And thrown themselves to rest in the shade.
The lights glowed inside, soon supper would ring
And he would go home where his father was King.
But no he was here with the wind and the sea
And all the things he was going to be.
He would build empires
And he would have sons
Others would fall
Where the current runs
He would find love
He would never find peace
For he must go seeking
The Golden Fleece
All of the things he was going to be
All of the things in the wind and the sea.
Notes: Some of Jackie's favorite poems included: "Ithaka" by Constantine P. Cavafy and "Memory of Cape Cod" by Edna St. Vincent Millay. Read Caroline Kennedy's "The Best Loved Poems of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis" for further information.