Walt Whitman

Here you will find the Long Poem Leaves Of Grass. A Carol Of Harvest For 1867 of poet Walt Whitman

Leaves Of Grass. A Carol Of Harvest For 1867

A SONG of the good green grass!
 A song no more of the city streets;
 A song of farms--a song of the soil of fields.

 A song with the smell of sun-dried hay, where the nimble pitchers
 handle the pitch-fork;
 A song tasting of new wheat, and of fresh-husk'd maize.

 For the lands, and for these passionate days, and for myself,
 Now I awhile return to thee, O soil of Autumn fields,
 Reclining on thy breast, giving myself to thee,
 Answering the pulses of thy sane and equable heart,
 Tuning a verse for thee. 10

 O Earth, that hast no voice, confide to me a voice!
 O harvest of my lands! O boundless summer growths!
 O lavish, brown, parturient earth! O infinite, teeming womb!
 A verse to seek, to see, to narrate thee.

 Ever upon this stage,
 Is acted God's calm, annual drama,
 Gorgeous processions, songs of birds,
 Sunrise, that fullest feeds and freshens most the soul,
 The heaving sea, the waves upon the shore, the musical, strong waves,
 The woods, the stalwart trees, the slender, tapering trees, 20
 The flowers, the grass, the lilliput, countless armies of the grass,
 The heat, the showers, the measureless pasturages,
 The scenery of the snows, the winds' free orchestra,
 The stretching, light-hung roof of clouds--the clear cerulean, and
 the bulging, silvery fringes,
 The high dilating stars, the placid, beckoning stars,
 The moving flocks and herds, the plains and emerald meadows,
 The shows of all the varied lands, and all the growths and products.

 Fecund America! To-day,
 Thou art all over set in births and joys!
 Thou groan'st with riches! thy wealth clothes thee as with a swathing
 garment! 30
 Thou laughest loud with ache of great possessions!
 A myriad-twining life, like interlacing vines, binds all thy vast
 As some huge ship, freighted to water's edge, thou ridest into port!
 As rain falls from the heaven, and vapors rise from earth, so have
 the precious values fallen upon thee, and risen out of thee!
 Thou envy of the globe! thou miracle!
 Thou, bathed, choked, swimming in plenty!
 Thou lucky Mistress of the tranquil barns!
 Thou Prairie Dame that sittest in the middle, and lookest out upon
 thy world, and lookest East, and lookest West!
 Dispensatress, that by a word givest a thousand miles--that giv'st a
 million farms, and missest nothing!
 Thou All-Acceptress--thou Hospitable--(thou only art hospitable, as
 God is hospitable.) 40

 When late I sang, sad was my voice;
 Sad were the shows around me, with deafening noises of hatred, and
 smoke of conflict;
 In the midst of the armies, the Heroes, I stood,
 Or pass'd with slow step through the wounded and dying.

 But now I sing not War,
 Nor the measur'd march of soldiers, nor the tents of camps,
 Nor the regiments hastily coming up, deploying in line of battle.

 No more the dead and wounded;
 No more the sad, unnatural shows of War.

 Ask'd room those flush'd immortal ranks? the first forth-stepping
 armies? 50
 Ask room, alas, the ghastly ranks--the armies dread that follow'd.

 (Pass--pass, ye proud brigades!
 So handsome, dress'd in blue--with your tramping, sinewy legs;
 With your shoulders young and strong--with your knapsacks and your
 --How elate I stood and watch'd you, where, starting off, you

 Pass;--then rattle, drums, again!
 Scream, you steamers on the river, out of whistles loud and shrill,
 your salutes!
 For an army heaves in sight--O another gathering army!
 Swarming, trailing on the rear--O you dread, accruing army!
 O you regiments so piteous, with your mortal diarrhoea! with your
 fever! 60
 O my land's maimed darlings! with the plenteous bloody bandage and
 the crutch!
 Lo! your pallid army follow'd!)

 But on these days of brightness,
 On the far-stretching beauteous landscape, the roads and lanes, the
 high-piled farm-wagons, and the fruits and barns,
 Shall the dead intrude?

 Ah, the dead to me mar not--they fit well in Nature;
 They fit very well in the landscape, under the trees and grass,
 And along the edge of the sky, in the horizon's far margin.

 Nor do I forget you, departed;
 Nor in winter or summer, my lost ones; 70
 But most, in the open air, as now, when my soul is rapt and at
 peace--like pleasing phantoms,
 Your dear memories, rising, glide silently by me.

 I saw the day, the return of the Heroes;
 (Yet the Heroes never surpass'd, shall never return;
 Them, that day, I saw not.)

 I saw the interminable Corps--I saw the processions of armies,
 I saw them approaching, defiling by, with divisions,
 Streaming northward, their work done, camping awhile in clusters of
 mighty camps.

 No holiday soldiers!-