Song of the Broad-Axe
9 (America! I do not vaunt my love for you, I have what I have.) The axe leaps! The solid forest gives fluid utterances, They tumble forth, they rise and form, Hut, tent, landing, survey, Flail, plough, pick, crowbar, spade, Shingle, rail, prop, wainscot, lamb, lath, panel, gable, Citadel, ceiling, saloon, academy, organ, exhibition-house, library, Cornice, trellis, pilaster, balcony, window, turret, porch, Hoe, rake, pitchfork, pencil, wagon, staff, saw, jack-plane, mallet, wedge, rounce, Chair, tub, hoop, table, wicket, vane, sash, floor, Work-box, chest, string'd instrument, boat, frame, and what not, Capitols of States, and capitol of the nation of States, Long stately rows in avenues, hospitals for orphans or for the poor or sick, Manhattan steamboats and clippers taking the measure of all seas. The shapes arise! Shapes of the using of axes anyhow, and the users and all that neighbors them, Cutters down of wood and haulers of it to the Penobscot or Kenebec, Dwellers in cabins among the Californian mountains or by the little lakes, or on the Columbia, Dwellers south on the banks of the Gila or Rio Grande, friendly gatherings, the characters and fun, Dwellers along the St. Lawrence, or north in Kanada, or down by the Yellowstone, dwellers on coasts and off coasts, Seal-fishers, whalers, arctic seamen breaking passages through the ice. The shapes arise! Shapes of factories, arsenals, foundries, markets, Shapes of the two-threaded tracks of railroads, Shapes of the sleepers of bridges, vast frameworks, girders, arches, Shapes of the fleets of barges, tows, lake and canal craft, river craft, Ship-yards and dry-docks along the Eastern and Western seas, and in many a bay and by-place, The live-oak kelsons, the pine planks, the spars, the hackmatack-roots for knees, The ships themselves on their ways, the tiers of scaffolds, the workmen busy outside and inside, The tools lying around, the great auger and little auger, the adze, bolt, line, square, gouge, and bead-plane.
Posted on 04/10/2014, in literature, poetry and tagged 19th Century Poetry, American literature, American poets, Daily Whitman, free verse, Leaves of Grass, literature, poems, poetry, Transcendentalists, Walt Whitman. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.