Monthly Archives: October 2015

Daily Whitman


The Dismantled Ship

  In some unused lagoon, some nameless bay,
  On sluggish, lonesome waters, anchor'd near the shore,
  An old, dismasted, gray and batter'd ship, disabled, done,
  After free voyages to all the seas of earth, haul'd up at last and
      hawser'd tight,
  Lies rusting, mouldering.



Daily Whitman


As the Greek’s Signal Flame

  As the Greek's signal flame, by antique records told,
  Rose from the hill-top, like applause and glory,
  Welcoming in fame some special veteran, hero,
  With rosy tinge reddening the land he'd served,
  So I aloft from Mannahatta's ship-fringed shore,
  Lift high a kindled brand for thee, Old Poet.



Daily Whitman


The Dead Emperor

  To-day, with bending head and eyes, thou, too, Columbia,
  Less for the mighty crown laid low in sorrow—less for the Emperor,
  Thy true condolence breathest, sendest out o'er many a salt sea mile,
  Mourning a good old man—a faithful shepherd, patriot.



Daily Whitman


Not Meagre, Latent Boughs Alone

  Not meagre, latent boughs alone, O songs! (scaly and bare, like
      eagles' talons,)
  But haply for some sunny day (who knows?) some future spring, some
      summer—bursting forth,
  To verdant leaves, or sheltering shade—to nourishing fruit,
  Apples and grapes—the stalwart limbs of trees emerging—the fresh,
      free, open air,
  And love and faith, like scented roses blooming.


Daily Whitman


You Lingering Sparse Leaves of Me

  You lingering sparse leaves of me on winter-nearing boughs,
  And I some well-shorn tree of field or orchard-row;
  You tokens diminute and lorn—(not now the flush of May, or July
      clover-bloom—no grain of August now;)
  You pallid banner-staves—you pennants valueless—you overstay'd of time,
  Yet my soul-dearest leaves confirming all the rest,
  The faithfulest—hardiest—last.



Daily Whitman



  The soft voluptuous opiate shades,
  The sun just gone, the eager light dispell'd—(I too will soon be
      gone, dispell'd,)
  A haze—nirwana—rest and night—oblivion.



Daily Whitman


Orange Buds by Mail from Florida

  A lesser proof than old Voltaire's, yet greater,
  Proof of this present time, and thee, thy broad expanse, America,
  To my plain Northern hut, in outside clouds and snow,
  Brought safely for a thousand miles o'er land and tide,
  Some three days since on their own soil live-sprouting,
  Now here their sweetness through my room unfolding,
  A bunch of orange buds by mall from Florida.


Daily Whitman


Twenty Years

  Down on the ancient wharf, the sand, I sit, with a new-comer chatting:
  He shipp'd as green-hand boy, and sail'd away, (took some sudden,
      vehement notion;)
  Since, twenty years and more have circled round and round,
  While he the globe was circling round and round, —and now returns:
  How changed the place—all the old land-marks gone—the parents dead;
  (Yes, he comes back to lay in port for good—to settle—has a
      well-fill'd purse—no spot will do but this;)
  The little boat that scull'd him from the sloop, now held in leash I see,
  I hear the slapping waves, the restless keel, the rocking in the sand,
  I see the sailor kit, the canvas bag, the great box bound with brass,
  I scan the face all berry-brown and bearded—the stout-strong frame,
  Dress'd in its russet suit of good Scotch cloth:
  (Then what the told-out story of those twenty years? What of the future?)


Daily Whitman


A Prairie Sunset

  Shot gold, maroon and violet, dazzling silver, emerald, fawn,
  The earth's whole amplitude and Nature's multiform power consign'd
      for once to colors;
  The light, the general air possess'd by them—colors till now unknown,
  No limit, confine—not the Western sky alone—the high meridian—
      North, South, all,
  Pure luminous color fighting the silent shadows to the last.



Daily Whitman


Stronger Lessons

  Have you learn'd lessons only of those who admired you, and were
      tender with you, and stood aside for you?
  Have you not learn'd great lessons from those who reject you, and
      brace themselves against you? or who treat you with contempt,
      or dispute the passage with you?