1.OF the visages of things—And of piercing through         to the accepted hells beneath;Of ugliness—To me there is just as much in it as         there is in beauty—And now the ugliness of         human beings is acceptable to me;Of detected persons—To me, detected persons are         not, in any respect, worse than undetected per-         sons—and are not in any respect worse than I         am myself;Of criminals—To me, any judge, or any juror, is         equally criminal—and any reputable person is         also—and the President is also.2.OF waters, forests, hills;Of the earth at large, whispering through medium of         me;Of vista—Suppose some sight in arriere, through the         formative chaos, presuming the growth, fulness,         life, now attain'd on the journey;(But I see the road continued, and the journey ever         continued;)Of what was once lacking on earth, and in due time         has become supplied—And of what will yet be         supplied,Because all I see and know, I believe to have purport         in what will yet be supplied.3.OF persons arrived at high positions, ceremonies,         wealth, scholarships, and the like;To me, all that those persons have arrived at, sinks         away from them, except as it results to their         Bodies and Souls,So that often to me they appear gaunt and naked;And often, to me, each one mocks the others, and         mocks himself or herself,And of each one, the core of life, namely happiness,         is full of the rotten excrement of maggots,And often, to me, those men and women pass unwit-         tingly the true realities of life, and go toward         false realities,And often, to me, they are alive after what custom has         served them, but nothing more,And often, to me, they are sad, hasty, unwaked son-         nambules, walking the dusk.4.OF ownership—As if one fit to own things could not         at pleasure enter upon all, and incorporate         them into himself or herself;Of Equality—As if it harm'd me, giving others the         same chances and rights as myself—As if it         were not indispensable to my own rights that         others possess the same;Of Justice—As if Justice could be anything but the         same ample law, expounded by natural judges         and saviors,As if it might be this thing or that thing, according         to decisions.5.As I sit with others, at a great feast, suddenly, while         the music is playing,To my mind, (whence it comes I know not,) spectral,         in mist, of a wreck at sea,Of the flower of the marine science of fifty generations,         founder'd off the Northeast coast, and going         down—Of the steamship Arctic going down,Of the veil'd tableau—Women gather'd together on         deck, pale, heroic, waiting the moment that         draws so close—O the moment!O the huge sob—A few bubbles—the white foam         spirting up—And then the women gone,Sinking there, while the passionless wet flows on—         And I now pondering, Are those women indeed         gone?Are Souls drown'd and destroy'd so?Is only matter triumphant?6.OF what I write from myself—As if that were not the         resumé;Of Histories—As if such, however complete, were not         less complete than my poems;As if the shreds, the records of nations, could possibly         be as lasting as my poems;As if here were not the amount of all nations, and of         all the lives of heroes.7.OF obedience, faith, adhesiveness;As I stand aloof and look, there is to me something         profoundly affecting in large masses of men,         following the lead of those who do not believe         in men. The Walt Whitman Archive, a comprehensive online resource focusing on Whitman’s life and poetry; Full-text, free online edition of Leaves of Grass (the 1855 edition) Walt Whitman’s America: A Cultural Biography, by David Reynolds; Walt Whitman: A Life, by Justin Kaplan; If you’d like to read more of Whitman’s work, both poetry and prose, we recommend Leaves of Grass and Other Writings (Norton … He talks about Americans that have several qualities but they are not the same. Called the "Bard of Democracy" and considered one of America's most influential poets, Walt Whitman was born on May 31, 1819, in … Walt Whitman, Poet of a Contradictory America During the Civil War era, the writer emerged as an emblem of the country’s dissonance. behold it well!Perhaps every mite has once form'd part of a sick person—yet behold!The grass of spring covers the prairies,The bean bursts noiselessly through the mould in the garden,The delicate spear of the onion pierces upward,The apple-buds cluster together on the apple-branches,The resurrection of the wheat appears with pale visage out of its graves,The tinge awakes over the willow-tree and the mulberry-tree,The he-birds carol mornings and evenings while the she-birds sit on their nests,The young of poultry break through the hatch'd eggs,The new-born of animals appear, the calf is dropt from the cow, the colt from the mare,Out of its little hill faithfully rise the potato's dark green leaves,Out of its hill rises the yellow maize-stalk, the lilacs bloom in the dooryards,The summer growth is innocent and disdainful above all those strata of sour dead.What chemistry!That the winds are really not infectious,That this is no cheat, this transparent green-wash of the sea which is so amorous after me,That it is safe to allow it to lick my naked body all over with its tongues,That it will not endanger me with the fevers that have deposited themselves in it,That all is clean forever and forever,That the cool drink from the well tastes so good,That blackberries are so flavorous and juicy,That the fruits of the apple-orchard and the orange-orchard, that melons, grapes, peaches, plums, will   none of them poison me,That when I recline on the grass I do not catch any disease,Though probably every spear of grass rises out of what was once a catching disease.Now I am terrified at the Earth, it is that calm and patient,It grows such sweet things out of such corruptions,It turns harmless and stainless on its axis, with such endless successions of diseas'd corpses,It distills such exquisite winds out of such infused fetor,It renews with such unwitting looks its prodigal, annual, sumptuous crops,It gives such divine materials to men, and accepts such leavings from them at last. 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