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We often read about the sea in terms of adventure; sailing the high seas. We also tend to see the sea in terms of its power, beauty, and a source of sustenance and income. What makes this poem sad or depressing is that it provides us with a different perspective. What we see as adventure, others look at in fear; what we believe mysterious, mat have been responsible for another's loss. Ryders to the Sea is a story of loss and grief. A mother has lost her husband and all of her sons to the endless waters of the sea. She was never able to bury them, and she was never able to say goodbye.