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Whitman, Walt

· Look Down, Fair Moon by Walt Whitman · I Dream’d In A Dream by Walt Whitman · When I Heard at the Close of the Day by Walt Whitman · As If a Phantom Caress’d Me by Walt Whitman · By the Bivouac’s Fitful Flame by Walt Whitman · A Noiseless Patient Spider by Walt Whitman · Cavalry Crossing a Ford by Walt Whitman · Among the Multitude by Walt Whitman · Adieu To a Soldier by Walt Whitman · Beat! Beat! Drums! by Walt Whitman · When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer by Walt Whitman · Walt Whitman: On the Beach at Night

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Look Down, Fair Moon by Walt Whitman

Look Down, Fair Moon

Look down, fair moon, and bathe this scene;
Pour softly down night’s nimbus floods,
on faces ghastly, swollen, purple;
On the dead, on their backs, with their arms toss’d wide,
Pour down your unstinted nimbus, sacred moon.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Look Down, Fair Moon

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


I Dream’d In A Dream by Walt Whitman

 

I Dream’d In A Dream

I dream’d in a dream,
I saw a city invincible to the attacks
of the whole of the rest of the earth;
I dream’d that was the new City of Friends;
Nothing was greater there than the quality
of robust love – it led the rest;
It was seen every hour in the actions
of the men of that city,
And in all their looks and words.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
I Dream’d In A Dream

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


When I Heard at the Close of the Day by Walt Whitman

 

When I Heard at the Close of the Day

When I heard at the close of the day how my name had been receiv’d with plaudits in the capitol, still it was not a happy night for me that follow’d,
And else when I carous’d, or when my plans were accomplish’d, still I was not happy,
But the day when I rose at dawn from the bed of perfect health, refresh’d, singing, inhaling the ripe breath of autumn,
When I saw the full moon in the west grow pale and disappear in the morning light,
When I wander’d alone over the beach, and undressing bathed, laughing with the cool waters, and saw the sun rise,
And when I thought how my dear friend my lover was on his way coming, O then I was happy,
O then each breath tasted sweeter, and all that day my food nourish’d me more, and the beautiful day pass’d well,
And the next came with equal joy, and with the next at evening came my friend,
And that night while all was still I heard the waters roll slowly continually up the shores,
I heard the hissing rustle of the liquid and sands as directed to me whispering to congratulate me,
For the one I love most lay sleeping by me under the same cover in the cool night,
In the stillness in the autumn moonbeams his face was inclined toward me,
And his arm lay lightly around my breast – and that night I was happy.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: When I Heard at the Close of the Day
(Published in the Leaves of Grass. 1900)

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


As If a Phantom Caress’d Me by Walt Whitman

 

As If a Phantom Caress’d Me

As if a phantom caress’d me,
I thought I was not alone walking
here by the shore;
But the one I thought was with me as
now I walk by the shore,
the one I loved that caress’d me,
As I lean and look
through the glimmering light,
that one has utterly disappear’d.
And those appear that are hateful to me
and mock me.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: As If a Phantom Caress’d Me

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


By the Bivouac’s Fitful Flame by Walt Whitman

 

By the Bivouac’s Fitful Flame

By the bivouac’s fitful flame,
A procession winding around me, solemn and sweet and slow–but first I note,
The tents of the sleeping army, the fields’ and woods’ dim outline,
The darkness lit by spots of kindled fire, the silence,
Like a phantom far or near an occasional figure moving,
The shrubs and trees, (as I lift my eyes they seem to be stealthily watching me,)
While wind in procession thoughts, O tender and wondrous thoughts,
Of life and death, of home and the past and loved, and of those that are far away;
A solemn and slow procession there as I sit on the ground,
By the bivouac’s fitful flame.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: By the Bivouac’s Fitful Flame

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


A Noiseless Patient Spider by Walt Whitman

 

A noiseless patient spider

A noiseless patient spider,
I mark’d where on a little promontory it stood isolated,
Mark’d how to explore the vacant, vast surrounding,
It launched forth filament, filament, filament, out of itself.
Ever unreeling them, ever tirelessly speeding them.

And you O my soul where you stand,
Surrounded, detatched, in measureless oceans of space,
Ceaselessly musing, venturing, throwing, seeking the spheres to connect them.
Till the bridge you will need be form’d, till the ductile anchor hold,
Till the gossamer thread you fling catch somewhere, O my soul.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: A noiseless patient spider

• fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


Cavalry Crossing a Ford by Walt Whitman

 

Cavalry Crossing a Ford

A line in long array where they wind betwixt green islands,
They take a serpentine course, their arms flash in the sun–hark to the musical clank,
Behold the silvery river, in it the splashing horses loitering stop to drink,
Behold the brown-faced men, each group, each person a picture, the negligent rest on the saddles,
Some emerge on the opposite bank, others are just entering the ford–while,
Scarlet and blue and snowy white,
The guidon flags flutter gayly in the wind.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: Cavalry Crossing a Ford

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


Among the Multitude by Walt Whitman

 

Among the Multitude

Among the men and women the multitude,
I perceive one picking me out by secret and divine signs,
Acknowledging none else, not parent, wife, husband, brother, child,
any nearer than I am,
Some are baffled, but that one is not–that one knows me.

Ah lover and perfect equal,
I meant that you should discover me so by faint indirections,
And I when I meet you mean to discover you by the like in you.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: Among the Multitude

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


Adieu To a Soldier by Walt Whitman

 

Adieu To a Soldier

Adieu, O soldier!
You of the rude campaigning, (which we shared,)
The rapid march, the life of the camp,
The hot contention of opposing fronts’the long maneuver,
Red battles with their slaughter, ‘the stimulus’the strong, terrific game,
Spell of all brave and manly hearts’the trains of Time through you, and like of you, all fill’d,,
With war, and war’s expression.

Adieu, dear comrade!
Your mission is fulfill’d—but I, more warlike,
Myself, and this contentious soul of mine,
Still on our own campaigning bound,
Through untried roads, with ambushes, opponents lined,
Through many a sharp defeat and many a crisis’often baffled,
Here marching, ever marching on, a war fight out’aye here,
To fiercer, weightier battles give expression.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: Adieu To a Soldier

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


Beat! Beat! Drums! by Walt Whitman

 

Beat! Beat! Drums!

Beat! beat! drums!–Blow! bugles! blow!
Through the windows–through doors–burst like a ruthless force,
Into the solemn church, and scatter the congregation;
Into the school where the scholar is studying;
Leave not the bridegroom quiet–no happiness must he have now with his bride;
Nor the peaceful farmer any peace, plowing his field or gathering his grain;
So fierce you whirr and pound, you drums–so shrill you bugles blow.

Beat! beat! drums!–Blow! bugles! blow!
Over the traffic of cities–over the rumble of wheels in the streets:
Are beds prepared for sleepers at night in the houses? No sleepers must sleep in those beds;
No bargainers’ bargains by day–no brokers or speculators–Would they continue?
Would the talkers be talking? would the singer attempt to sing?
Would the lawyer rise in the court to state his case before the judge?
Then rattle quicker, heavier drums–you bugles wilder blow.

Beat! beat! drums!–Blow! bugles! blow!
Make no parley–stop for no expostulation;
Mind not the timid–mind not the weeper or prayer;
Mind not the old man beseeching the young man;
Let not the child’s voice be heard, nor the mother’s entreaties;
Make even the trestles to shake the dead, where they lie awaiting the hearses,
So strong you thump, O terrible drums–so loud you bugles blow.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: Beat! Beat! Drums!

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer by Walt Whitman

 

When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer

When I heard the learn’d astronomer;
When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me;
When I was shown the charts and the diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them;
When I, sitting, heard the astronomer, where he lectured with much applause in the lecture-room,
How soon, unaccountable, I became tired and sick;
Till rising and gliding out, I wander’d off by myself,
In the mystical moist night-air, and from time to time,
Look’d up in perfect silence at the stars.

Walt Whitman
(1819 – 1892)
Poem: When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer

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More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


Walt Whitman: On the Beach at Night

 

On the Beach at Night

On the beach at night,
Stands a child with her father,
Watching the east, the autumn sky.

Up through the darkness,
While ravening clouds, the burial clouds, in black masses spreading,
Lower sullen and fast athwart and down the sky,
Amid a transparent clear belt of ether yet left in the east,
Ascends large and calm the lord-star Jupiter,
And nigh at hand, only a very little above,
Swim the delicate sisters the Pleiades.

From the beach the child holding the hand of her father,
Those burial-clouds that lower victorious soon to devour all,
Watching, silently weeps.

Weep not, child,
Weep not, my darling,
With these kisses let me remove your tears,
The ravening clouds shall not long be victorious,
They shall not long possess the sky, they devour the stars only in apparition,
Jupiter shall emerge, be patient, watch again another night, the Pleiades shall emerge,
They are immortal, all those stars both silvery and golden shall shine out again,
The great stars and the little ones shall shine out again, they endure,
The vast immortal suns and the long-enduring pensive moons shall again shine.

Then dearest child mournest thou only for Jupiter?
Considerest thou alone the burial of the stars?

Something there is,
(With my lips soothing thee, adding I whisper,
I give thee the first suggestion, the problem and indirection,)
Something there is more immortal even than the stars,
(Many the burials, many the days and nights, passing away,)
Something that shall endure longer even than lustrous Jupiter
Longer than sun or any revolving satellite,
Or the radiant sisters the Pleiades.

Walt Whitman
(1819–1892)
On the Beach at Night

• fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Archive W-X, Archive W-X, Whitman, Walt


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