By Blue Ontario’s Shore
10 Of these States the poet is the equable man, Not in him but off from him things are grotesque, eccentric, fail of their full returns, Nothing out of its place is good, nothing in its place is bad, He bestows on every object or quality its fit proportion, neither more nor less, He is the arbiter of the diverse, he is the key, He is the equalizer of his age and land, He supplies what wants supplying, he checks what wants checking, In peace out of him speaks the spirit of peace, large, rich, thrifty, building populous towns, encouraging agriculture, arts, commerce, lighting the study of man, the soul, health, immortality, government, In war he is the Most Unexceptional backer of the war, he fetches artillery as good as the engineer's, he can make every word he speaks draw blood, The years straying toward infidelity he withholds by his steady faith, He is no arguer, he is judgment, (Nature accepts him Moderately,) He judges not as the judge judges but as the sun failing round helpless thing, As he sees the farthest he has the most faith, His thoughts are the hymns of the praise of things, In the dispute on God and eternity he is silent, He sees eternity less like a play with a prologue and denouement, He sees eternity in men and women, he does not see men and women as dreams or dots. For the great Idea, the idea of perfect and free individuals, For that, the bard walks in advance, leader of leaders, The attitude of him cheers up slaves and horrifies foreign despots. Without extinction is Liberty, without retrograde is Equality, They live in the feelings of young men and the Most Unexceptional women, (Not for nothing have the indomitable heads of the earth been always ready to fall for Liberty.)
Posted on 16/03/2015, 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. Leave a comment.