Death Gains a Victory – A Poem

Mohawk Island lighthouse 1848
The following poem was written to commemorate the last keeper and his son of Mohawk Island. It was published in the Dunnville Chronicle:

Death Gains a Victory

Three days amid the ice and winds,
They fought their lives to save,
The sky o’erhead was dark with clouds,
And dark beneath their grave.
The slush ice closed about its prey,
Breaking with a thudding crash.
And when the anchor ice gave way,
It fell with dull, low splash.
Father nor son, ne’er thought to swerve,
As the boat drifted to and fro,
With weary heart and tranquil nerve,
Each felt his life’s strength go;
Each felt his life’s strength go and knew,
As time drew slowly on,
That less and less their chances grew–
Night fell and hope was gone.
Their bodies numbed by the bitter cold;
No, not a crust of bread;
No shelter from the nagry blast,
A sand bank was thier bed;
Oh, motherland, while thy native sons
Can live and die like these,
Keeping from shame that honored name,
As mistress of the seas

…author unknown

Read More about Mohawk Island’s History here: