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One's-self I sing, a simple separate person,
Yet utter the word Democratic, the word En-Masse.
Of physiology from top to toe I sing,
Not physiognomy alone nor brain alone is worthy for the

Muse, I say the Form complete is worthier far,
The Female equally with the Male I sing.
Of Life immense in passion, pulse, and power,
Cheerful, for freest action form’d under the laws divine,
The Modern Man I sing.

You who celebrate bygones,
Who have explored the outward, the surfaces of the races,

the life that has exhibited itself, Who have treated of man as the creature of politics, aggre

gates, rulers and priests, I, habitan of the Alleghanies, treating of him as he is in

himself in his own rights, Pressing the pulse of the life that has seldom exhibited it

self, (the great pride of man in himself,) Chanter of Personality, outlining what is yet to be, I project the history of the future.

For him I sing,
I raise the present on the past,
(As some perennial tree out of its roots, the present on the

past,) With time and space I him dilate and fuse the immortal

To make himself by them the law unto himself.
Me imperturbe, standing at ease in Nature,

Master of all or mistress of all, aplomb in the midst of

irrational things, Imbued as they, passive, receptive, silent as they, Finding my occupation, poverty, notoriety, foibles, crimes,

less important than I thought, Me toward the Mexican sea, or in the Mannahatta or the

Tennessee, or far north or inland,
A river man, or a man of the woods or of


farm-life of these States or of the coast, or the lakes or Kanada, Me wherever my life is lived, 0 to be self-balanced for

contingencies, To confront night, storms, hunger, ridicule, accidents, re

buffs, as the trees and animals do.

I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear,
Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be

blithe and strong, The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam, The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or

leaves off work, The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat, the

deck-hand singing on the steamboat deck, The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench, the hatter

singing as he stands, The wood-cutter's song, the ploughboy's on his way

in the morning, or at noon intermission or at sundown, The delicious singing of the mother, or of the young wife

at work, or of the girl sewing or washing, Each singing what belongs to him or her and to none else, The day what belongs to the day — at night the party of

young fellows, robust, friendly, Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.

Shut not your doors to me proud libraries,
For that which was lacking on all your well-filld shelves,

yet needed most, I bring,

Forth from the war emerging, a book I have made,
The words of my book nothing, the drift of it every thing,
A book separate, not link'd with the rest nor felt by the

But you ye untold latencies will thrill to every page.


The soul,
Forever and forever - longer than soil is brown and solid

longer than water ebbs and Aows. I will make the poems of materials, for I think they are to

be the most spiritual poems, And I will make the poems of my body and of mortality, For I think I shall then supply myself with the poems of

my soul and of immortality. I will make a song for these States that no one State

may under any circumstances be subjected to another State, And I will make a song that there shall be comity by day

and by night between all the States, and between any

two of them, And I will make a song for the ears of the President, full

of weapons with menacing points, And behind the weapons countless dissatisfied faces; And a song make I of the One form'd out of all, The fang’d and glittering One whose head is over all, Resolute warlike One including and over all, (However high the head of any else that head is over all.) I will acknowledge contemporary lands, I will trail the whole geography of the globe and salute

courteously every city large and small, And employments ! I will put in my poems that with you

is heroism upon land and sea, And I will report all heroism from an American point of


I will sing the song of companionship,
I will show what alone must finally compact these,
I believe these are to found their own ideal of manly love,

indicating it in me, I will therefore let Aame from me the burning fires that

were threatening to consume me, I will lift what has too long kept down those smouldering

fires, I will give them complete abandonment, I will write the evangel-poem of comrades and of love, For who but I should understand love with all its sorrow

and joy?

And who but I should be the poet of comrades?

I am the credulous man of qualities, ages, races,
I advance from the people in their own spirit,
Here is what sings unrestricted faith.
Omnes ! omnes ! let others ignore what they may,
I make the poem of evil also, I commemorate that part

also, I am myself just as much evil as good, and my nation is

and I say there is in fact no evil, , (Or if there is I say it is just as important to you, to the

land or to me, as any thing else.) I too, following many and follow'd by many, inaugurate a

religion, I descend into the arena, (It may be I am destin'd to utter the loudest cries there,

the winner's pealing shouts, Who knows ? they may rise from me yet, and soar above

every thing.) Each is not for its own sake, I

say the whole earth and all the stars in the sky are for

religion's sake. I say no man has ever yet been half devout enough, None has ever yet adored or worship’d half enough,

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