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was pretty quiet abaft, and to leeward, so that a boat might live under her lee; and I expected the captain would wait for us there a little. The moment I rejoined my dear wife, I urged her instantly to accompany me to the deck, telling her our situation. "No!" said she, "I will not stir, and you will not stir; they must all perish; a boat cannot endure this storm. Let us trust in God, Edward,” continued she," and if we die, we die together.""It is done,” I replied, "we will not stir.” "Then tell them so," cried she hastily ;" and if you can lay your hand on the bread-bag in your way, it may be useful to them, if they survive this hour." I hastened to ascend, at which moment the brig seemed to right, and I was struck back by a column of water rushing down the companion, followed by the shutting to of its doors. The brig had swung off the point of the reef, and the sea then broke over the main chains, the vessel being upright. I now easily succeeded in getting on deck, but no boat was to be seen; yet now and then I thought I heard the voices of the miserable crew at some distance on the brig's quarter; and sometimes I fancied I saw them, when the strong lightning's glare lighted up every thing around for an instant, leaving the immediate darkness greater. The brig soon took the ground again, on a reef within, and heeled over as before, which threw me down the ladder; the companion doors fortunately slamming to after me, as the sea instantly broke over the vessel fore and aft. My ever kind wife hastened to my assistance, but was herself thrown to the other side of the cabin. I was not hurt, so that in a little time I
reached the place where she lay, and we crawled up together to windward, where we endeavoured to secure ourselves. More than an hour passed away with us thus, in dismal darkness below; but we enjoyed the light of God's presence; offering up prayer to him, in short but emphatical ejaculations and he heard us: we felt the influence of his peace, and were resigned to his will.
Our situation was awful; in all human probability, within one short hour we should be engulphed by an overwhelming sea. With arms folded round each other, we sat, endeavouring to keep our position, and so remained till the heaving motion of the vessel gradually subsided, and at length became scarcely perceptible; but she continued to lay over, nearly on her beam ends. I now again thought it right to reach the deck, and as the ladder had been lashed to its situation, it was not displaced, notwithstanding all the shocks the vessel had sustained. On ascending the ladder, I pushed open the lee half of the companion door, when a gleam of joy rushed upon me, on perceiving that the day had dawned, and that the water to leeward was quite smooth. The brig now lying on the innermost part of the reef, I discovered high land ahead and astern, and a fine sandy beach abreast of us, little more than a mile off. I hastened below to my dear wife, into the dark cabin, exclaiming, "Come to me, my love; come on deck; it is daylight!" Without a word, she made her way to me, and ascended the ladder. On emerging from darkness into light, her feelings overcame her, and she poured forth her heart to God. After a few moments of abstraction, she
crept down to the lee gunwale of the quarter-deck: "Where is the boat, and our poor companions?" she exclaimed; "I do not see them !"-"Perhaps," I replied, "they are safely landed on yon beach, and will soon return to take us out of the vessel." I now looked earnestly around me: the mainmast was gone, but the stump was standing; the wreck of it had been cleared away: the foremast remained, but the fore-topmast had gone, and was hanging by its rigging forward: the booms were gone, the boats were gone, the gabbose for cooking gone, the binnacle gone: the hen-coops alone remained in their places; but all the fowls and Guinea-fowls that were in the coop to leeward, were drowned: the ducks which were in the other coop survived, and also four fowls; yet these seemed more dead than alive. All was desolation on deck and aloft; but the day had dawned, and the morning smiled serenely on us, while a gentle calm spread itself over the ocean all around.
The land astern of the brig to the northward, seemed high and well wooded; but our eyes were attracted by the smooth sandy shore, where we wished and hoped to be; and thus gazing, our attention became gradually rivetted on a promontory, which terminates the sandy beach to the southward, distant about three miles. The rising sun shone directly upon it, and it was then that it arrested our particular notice, indeed admiration, notwithstanding our critical situation. When these almost happy emotions had a little subsided, we looked in every direction for the boat, but looked in vain; and then sad misgivings for the fate of the crew,
crossed our mind, which, even in spite of our consciousness to the late mercy, extended itself to ourselves; for although we felt an honest anxiety for the lives of our captain and his crew, yet we depended on them as a means, and, indeed, the only probable means, of our own escape from this unknown shore. In these contemplations, and suspense, we continued for some hours; during which time I fortunately thought I would try the pumps: the brake of the starboard pump had been shipped, but its bolt was twisted by some violence, so that it would not work: I could not find the other brake; and with great difficulty, after much hard exertion, I got the brake out, and shipped it with the bolt in the lee pump. I then went to work, and there was plenty to do; I kept pumping till I was quite exhausted, and the water still came up as abundantly as ever. I concluded the brig's bottom must be stove in, so that if we should beat off the reef into deep water, we must sink and go down.
About ten o'clock in the forenoon, the breeze began to set in from the sea, nearly E.N.E., and the brig worked fore and aft. I told my wife what my fears were, and that if it so happened, we must endeavour to get up the fore-rigging; as the water in-shore of us could not be very deep, and take the chance from thence of any escape that might offer. She pressed my hand, and looked like an angel in my face, but spoke not a word.
The sea-breeze freshened, and the sea beat a little on the weather side of the brig. In half an hour her stern swung off into deep water, and she hung by the bow. We now righted, that is to say,
the vessel became upright in the water, and, although no seaman, I had sailed enough to know something about it; I therefore immediately went to the tiller to see if the rudder was gone, which I had every reason to expect, but it was not; and at this discovery I rejoiced greatly, exclaiming, "The rudder is safe; that's well!" My wife did not precisely understand this, but she felt security in my look, and she thanked and blessed God for his goodness. The sea-breeze blew more freshly, but we hung by the fore-foot on the edge of the reef, which no doubt was higher than astern. At length the brig broke adrift, having most likely torn off her false keel forward, and perhaps some of the coral rock which had held her. I was now all amaze; I did not know what to do. "We must be patient, Edward," said my dear wife; "we shall go quietly on the sand." The brig continued to drift in upon a point of rock, close to which we saw a little rivulet. On this rock I expected to be dashed in pieces, but the current, which was setting us on that point, also directed us past it to the southward; so that the brig drifted between the reef to the eastward, and the long beach to the westward, down towards the perpendicular mountainous height, which we had so attentively fixed our eyes on early in. the morning, as forming the southern extremity of the sandy extension. I was desirous to get the brig under some command: there was something dragging astern; but finding the forestaysail yet untorn, although the sheet had been carried away, I got the weather sheet over, and was able to set the sail: the vessel's head now paid