Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Favorite Poem By Uncle Walt

O Christ! This is mastering me! In at the conquer’d doors they crowd. I am possess’d. I embody all presences outlaw’d or suffering; See myself in prison shaped like another man, And feel the dull unintermitted pain. For me the keepers of convicts shoulder their carbines and keep watch; It is I let out in the morning, and barr’d at night. Not a mutineer walks handcuff’d to jail, but I am handcuff’d to him and walk by his side; (I am less the jolly one there, and more the silent one, with sweat on my twitching lips.) Not a youngster is taken for larceny, but I go up too, and am tried and sentenced. Not a cholera patient lies at the last gasp, but I also lie at the last gasp; My face is ash-color’d—my sinews gnarl—away from me people retreat. Askers embody themselves in me, and I am embodied in them; I project my hat, sit shame-faced, and beg. Enough! enough! enough! Somehow I have been stunn’d. Stand back! Give me a little time beyond my cuff’d head, slumbers, dreams, gaping; I discover myself on the verge of a usual mistake. That I could forget the mockers and insults! That I could forget the trickling tears, and the blows of the bludgeons and hammers! That I could look with a separate look on my own crucifixion and bloody crowning. I remember now; I resume the overstaid fraction; The grave of rock multiplies what has been confided to it, or to any graves; Corpses rise, gashes heal, fastenings roll from me. I troop forth replenish’d with supreme power, one of an average unending procession; Inland and sea-coast we go, and we pass all boundary lines; Our swift ordinances on their way over the whole earth; The blossoms we wear in our hats the growth of thousands of years. -Walt Whitman

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