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Whatever they are to-day and whatever through time they
They each and all shall lift and pass away
cease from thee, While thou, Time's spirals rounding, out of thyself, thy
self still extricating, fusing, Equable, natural, mystical Union thou, (the mortal with
immortal blent,) Shalt soar toward the fulfilment of the future, the spirit of
the body and the mind, The soul, its destinies. The soul, its destinies, the real real, (Purport of all these apparitions of the real ;) In thee America, the soul, its destinies, Thou globe of globes ! thou wonder nebulous ! By many a throe of heat and cold convuls’d, (by these thy
self solidifying) Thou mental, mental orb -- thou New, indeed new, Spirit
ual World! The Present holds thee not for such vast growth as
thine, For such unparallel'd Aight as thine, such brood as thine, The FUTURE Only holds thee and can hold thee.
FROM NOON TO STARRY
Sauntering the pavement thus, or crossing the ceaseless
ferry, faces and faces and faces, I see them and complain not and am content with all.
Do you suppose I could be content with all if I thought
them their own finale ?
This now is too lamentable a face for a man,
Some abject louse asking leave to be, cringing for it,
This face is a dog's snout sniffing for garbage,
label, And more of the drug-shelf, laudanum, caoutchouc, or
hog's-lard. This face is an epilepsy, its wordless tongue gives out the
unearthly cry, Its veins down the neck distend, its eyes roll till they show
nothing but their whites, Its teeth grit, the palms of the hands are cut by the
turn'd-in nails, The man falls struggling and foaming to the ground, while
he speculates well.
This face is bitten by vermin and worms,
This face owes to the sexton his dismalest fee,
Features of my equals would you trick me with your
creas'd and cadaverous march? Well, you cannot trick me. I see your rounded never-erased flow, I see 'neath the rims of your haggard and mean disguises. Splay and twist as you like, poke with the tangling fores
of fishes or rats, You'll be unmuzzled, you certainly will.
I saw the face of the most smear'd and slobbering idiot
they had at the asylum, And I knew for my consolation what they knew not, I knew of the agents that emptied and broke my brother, The same wait to clear the rubbish from the fallen tene
ment, And I shall look again in a score or two of ages, And I shall meet the real landlord perfect and unharm’d,
every inch as good as myself.
Out of this face emerge banners and horses — O superb!
I see what is coming, I see the high pioneer-caps, see staves of runners clearing
I hear victorious drums.
This face is a life-boat,
of the rest, This face is Aavor’d fruit ready for eating, This face of a healthy honest boy is the programme of all
good. These faces bear testimony slumbering or awake, They show their descent from the Master himself. Off the word I have spoken I except not one-- red, white,
black, are all deific, In each house is the ovum, it comes forth after a thousand
THE MYSTIC TRUMPETER
Hark, some wild trumpeter, some strange musician, Hovering unseen in air, vibrates capricious tunes to-night.
I hear thee trumpeter, listening alert I catch thy notes,
Come nearer bodiless one, haply in thee resounds
echoing, pealing, Gives out to no one's ears but mine, but freely gives to
mine, That I may thee translate.
3 Blow trumpeter free and clear, I follow thee, While at thy liquid prelude, glad, serene, The fretting world, the streets, the noisy hours of day
withdraw, A holy calm descends like dew upon me, I walk in cool refreshing night the walks of Paradise, I scent the grass, the moist air and the roses ; Thy song expands my numb'd imbonded spirit, thou freest,
launchest me, Floating and basking upon heaven's lake.
4 Blow again trumpeter! and for my sensuous eyes, Bring the old pageants, show the feudal world. What charm thy music works! thou makest pass before
me, Ladies and cavaliers long dead, barons are in their castle
halls, the troubadours are singing, Arm’d knights go forth to redress wrongs, some in quest
of the holy Graal; I see the tournament, I see the contestants incased in
heavy armor seated on stately champing horses, I hear the shouts, the sounds of blows and smiting steel;
I see the Crusaders' tumultuous armies — hark, how the
cymbals clang, Lo, where the monks walk in advance, bearing the cross on high.
5 Blow again trumpeter! and for thy theme, Take now the enclosing theme of all, the solvent and the
setting, Love, that is pulse of all, the sustenance and the pang, The heart of man and woman all for love, No other theme but love — knitting, enclosing, all-diffus
O how the immortal phantoms crowd around me!
Aames that heat the world,
to death; Love, that is all the earth to lovers — love, that mocks
time and space, Love, that is day and night — love, that is sun and moon
Love, that is crimson, sumptuous, sick with perfume, No other words but words of love, no other thought but love.
6 Blow again trumpeter — conjure war’s alarums. Swift to thy spell a shuddering hum like distant thunder
rolls, Lo, where the arm’d men hasten - lo, mid the clouds of
dust the glint of bayonets, I see the grime-faced cannoneers, I mark the rosy Aash
amid the smoke, I hear the cracking of the guns; Nor war alone — thy fearful music-song, wild player,
brings every sight of fear, The deeds of ruthless brigands, rapine, murder — I hear
the cries for help!