SEASCAPE


Earth Children turn their new eyes upward,
As the rain falls into outstreched arms.
The world moves with beauty beneath their bodies.
The frenzied sea crys upon the shore.

The dawn infant breathes its first crystal breath.
As nature sweet incense flows through time.
The cycle of birth has now turned once around,
and set into motion the cycle of life

Young mountain lovers quench their thirst for sunlight,
and wet their tongues in the forest land stream.
Then bathe neath the silver waters of the moon
Through the night star's great prism frolic their dreams.

Amid the towering comstolk forests the new ones scamper
They run to eat of lifes blessed grain
The deep crop of summer is ready for harvest.
and autumns' celebration has come again.


Info

SEASCAPE is a poem written by Bruce Springsteen that, along with a paragraph entitled MY LADY, was his first published writing. It was printed in the April 1969 edition of Seascape, the literary magazine of Ocean County College. The poem was erroneously attributed in print to "Bruce Sprengsteen".

Scan of SEASCAPE from the literary magazine of Ocean County College
Scan of SEASCAPE from the literary magazine of Ocean County College

The third stanza from SEASCAPE would show up less than a year later in a slightly amended form in the Steel Mill song LADY WALKING DOWN BY THE RIVER.

The Publication

Seascape is the literary magazine issued by the student body of of Ocean County College in Toms River, NJ, where Bruce Springsteen spent only three semesters. He enrolled in September 1968 and dropped out in December 1969 shortly after his parents moved to California. The January 1969 edition of the magazine counted 48 pages and contained Springsteen's first two published writings, a poem presumably titled "Seascape" (see SEASCAPE) and a metaphorical paragraph titled "My Lady" (see MY LADY).

Scan of the Ocean County College literary magazine (cover page)
Scan of the Ocean County College literary magazine (cover page)
Scan of the Ocean County College literary magazine (credits page)
Scan of the Ocean County College literary magazine (credits page)
Scan of the Ocean County College literary magazine (page containing SEASCAPE)
Scan of the Ocean County College literary magazine (page containing SEASCAPE)
Scan of the Ocean County College literary magazine (page containing MY LADY)
Scan of the Ocean County College literary magazine (page containing MY LADY)

Only a few issues of the publication are known to exist. Most fans have seen Springsteen's writings in Seascape only under glass at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame And Museum in Cleveland. A copy was auctioned in June 2004 on Lelands.com, and a couple of years later an issue was donated to The Bruce Springsteen Special Collection at the Asbury Park Public Library, becoming the 3114th accepted item into the collection which is devoted to preserving the writing history and cultural legacy of Bruce Springsteen and members of the E Street Band. Another copy was auctioned in April 2016 on BackstageAuctions.com.

The Title

The poem is actually untitled. The word "Seascape" does not appear in the poem and is not even printed anywhere on the poem's page, but it was used as the poem's title by Lelands.com and was also given to Brucebase by the librarian at Ocean County College. John, the original administrator of Brucebase, told this website, "Regarding the titles, this is a point we need (and will) further research. There is also some question/confusion as to the initial (first) publishing date of the Springsteen poems (January 1969 or April 1969) or whether there were in fact two slightly different print runs (or two entirely different publications) that included the Springsteen poems."

"It is our understanding the book/magazine is titled 'Seascapes'. We have one of the poems listed as 'Seascape' (singular). The title of both of the two poems 'Seascape' and 'My Lady' were provided to us by an Ocean County College librarian, prior to us seeing the photos of the poems. From what we can see there is clearly no title shown for one of the two poems. We don't know what would have motivated this Librarian (who is no longer there) to give us the title 'Seascape' while at the same time mentioning to us that the publication is called 'Seascapes'. Weird, because we questioned that very point 'Seascapes'/'Seascape' at the time with the Librarian. The only thing we can deduct is that there is some alternative publication of the poems with that title... or the librarian at Ocean County College made a mistake. If it turns out there is no title we'll definitely change it to 'untitled'. We won't make up any title."

Request

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Available Versions

List of available versions of SEASCAPE on this website:

SEASCAPE

Page last updated: 21 Apr 2016