The "Sea-Gull" Icon


The "Sea-Gulls" icon alludes to one of E.J. Pratt's most beloved poems, "Sea-Gulls":

For one carved instant as they flew,
The language had no simile --
Silver, crystal, ivory
Were tarnished. Etched upon the horizon blue,
The frieze must go unchallenged, for the lift
And carriage of the wings would stain the drift
Of stars against a tropic indigo
Or dull the parable of snow.

Now settling one by one
Within green hollows or where curled
Crests caught the spectrum from the sun,
A thousand wings are furled.
No clay-born lilies of the world
Could blow as free
As those wild orchids of the sea.

To hear E.J. Pratt reading "Sea-Gulls," recorded in March 1956, in the Victoria College Library [0:55; 594Kb], click here.


The icon, created by Joshua Pollock, is based on the graphic which appears on the title pages of the volumes in the Complete Works of E.J. Pratt, published by the University of Toronto Press:


This graphic is, in turn, based on the cover of Newfoundland Verses designed by Frederic Varley:


For an enhanced version of the "Sea-Gulls" icon, click here.