H. Keusch: Snippets of Whitman

Please awe over these snippets from Whitman’s Leaves of Grass and feel free to sigh dejectedly because you can’t write stuff like it.

Dazzling and tremendous how quick the sunrise would kill me,
If I could not now and always send sunrise out of me.

Storming, enjoying, planning, loving, cautioning,
Breaking and filling, appearing and disappearing,
I tread day and night such roads.

Out of the dimness opposite equals advance… Always substance and increase,
Always a knit of identity…always distinction…always a breed of life.
To elaborate is no avail… Learned and unlearned feel that it is so.”

Clear and sweet is my soul…and clear and sweet is all that is not my soul.
Lack one lacks both…and the unseen is proved by the seen,
Till that becomes seen and receives proof in its turn.

Swiftly arose and spread around me all the peace and joy and knowledge that pass all the art and argument of the earth.

And I know I am solid and sound,
To me the converging objects of the universe perpetually flow,
All are written to me, and I must get what the writing means.
I know I am august,
I do not trouble my spirit to vindicate itself or to be understood,
I see that the elementary laws never apologize

I am the poet of the body,
And I am the poet of the soul.
The pleasures of heaven are with me, and the pains of hell are with me,
The first I graft and increase upon myself…the latter I translate into a new tongue.

Long have you dreamed contemptible dreams…
You must habit yourself to the dazzle of the light and of every moment of your life.


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