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Page 79
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CHILDREN OF ADAM.


TO THE GARDEN THE WORLD


TO the garden the world anew ascending,
Potent mates, daughters, sons, preluding,
The love, the life of their bodies, meaning and being,
Curious here behold my resurrection after slumber,
The revolving cycles in their wide sweep having brought me again,
Amorous, mature, all beautiful to me, all wondrous,
My limbs and the quivering fire that ever plays through them, for
         reasons, most wondrous,
Existing I peer and penetrate still,
Content with the present, content with the past,
By my side or back of me Eve following,
Or in front, and I following her just the same.

FROM PENT-UP ACHING RIVERS.


FROM pent-up aching rivers,
From that of myself without which I were nothing,
From what I am determin'd to make illustrious, even if I stand
         sole among men,
From my own voice resonant, singing the phallus,
Singing the song of procreation,
Singing the need of superb children and therein superb grown
         people,
Singing the muscular urge and the blending,
Singing the bedfellow's song, (O resistless yearning!
O for any and each the body correlative attracting!

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O for you whoever you are your correlative body! O it, more than
         all else, you delighting!)
From the hungry gnaw that eats me night and day,
From native moments, from bashful pains, singing them,
Seeking something yet unfound though I have diligently sought it
         many a long year,
Singing the true song of the soul fitful at random,
Renascent with grossest Nature or among animals,
Of that, of them and what goes with them my poems informing,
Of the smell of apples and lemons, of the pairing of birds,
Of the wet of woods, of the lapping of waves,
Of the mad pushes of waves upon the land, I them chanting,
The overture lightly sounding, the strain anticipating,
The welcome nearness, the sight of the perfect body,
The swimmer swimming naked in the bath, or motionless on his
         back lying and floating,
The female form approaching, I pensive, love-flesh tremulous
         aching,
The divine list for myself or you or for any one making,
The face, the limbs, the index from head to foot, and what it
         arouses,
The mystic deliria, the madness amorous, the utter abandonment,
(Hark close and still what I now whisper to you,
I love you, O you entirely possess me,
O that you and I escape from the rest and go utterly off, free and
         lawless,
Two hawks in the air, two fishes swimming in the sea not more
         lawless than we;)
The furious storm through me careering, I passionately trembling.
The oath of the inseparableness of two together, of the woman
         that loves me and whom I love more than my life, that oath
         swearing,
(O I willingly stake all for you,
O let me be lost if it must be so!
O you and I! what is it to us what the rest do or think?
What is all else to us? only that we enjoy each other and exhaust
         each other if it must be so;)
From the master, the pilot I yield the vessel to,
The general commanding me, commanding all, from him permis-
         sion taking,
From time the programme hastening, (I have loiter'd too long as
         it is,)
From sex, from the warp and from the woof,
From privacy, from frequent repinings alone,
From plenty of persons near and yet the right person not near,

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From the soft sliding of hands over me and thrusting of fingers
         through my hair and beard,
From the long sustain'd kiss upon the mouth or bosom,
From the close pressure that makes me or any man drunk, fainting
         with excess,
From what the divine husband knows, from the work of fatherhood,
From exultation, victory and relief, from the bedfellow's embrace
         in the night,
From the act-poems of eyes, hands, hips and bosoms,
From the cling of the trembling arm,
From the bending curve and the clinch,
From side by side the pliant coverlet off-throwing,
From the one so unwilling to have me leave, and me just as un-
         willing to leave,
(Yet a moment O tender waiter, and I return,)
From the hour of shining stars and dropping dews,
From the night a moment I emerging flitting out,
Celebrate you act divine and you children prepared for,
And you stalwart loins.

I SING THE BODY ELECTRIC.


1


I SING the body electric,
The armies of those I love engirth me and I engirth them,
They will not let me off till I go with them, respond to them,
And discorrupt them, and charge them full with the charge of the
         soul.

Was it doubted that those who corrupt their own bodies conceal
         themselves?
And if those who defile the living are as bad as they who defile
         the dead?
And if the body does not do fully as much as the soul?
And if the body were not the soul, what is the soul?

2


The love of the body of man or woman balks account, the body
         itself balks account,
That of the male is perfect, and that of the female is perfect.

The expression of the face balks account,
But the expression of a well-made man appears not only in his
         face,

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It is in his limbs and joints also, it is curiously in the joints of his
         hips and wrists,
It is in his walk, the carriage of his neck, the flex of his waist and
         knees, dress does not hide him,
The strong sweet quality he has strikes through the cotton and
         broadcloth,
To see him pass conveys as much as the best poem, perhaps more,
You linger to see his back, and the back of his neck and shoul-
         der-side.

The sprawl and fulness of babes, the bosoms and heads of women,
         the folds of their dress, their style as we pass in the street,
         the contour of their shape downwards,
The swimmer naked in the swimming-bath, seen as he swims
         through the transparent green-shine, or lies with his face
         up and rolls silently to and fro in the heave of the water,
The bending forward and backward of rowers in row-boats, the
         horseman in his saddle,
Girls, mothers, house-keepers, in all their performances,
The group of laborers seated at noon-time with their open dinner-
         kettles, and their wives waiting,
The female soothing a child, the farmer's daughter in the garden
         or cow-yard,
The young fellow hoeing corn, the sleigh-driver driving his six
         horses through the crowd,
The wrestle of wrestlers, two apprentice-boys, quite grown, lusty,
         good-natured, native-born, out on the vacant lot at sun-
         down after work,
The coats and caps thrown down, the embrace of love and resistance,
The upper-hold and under-hold, the hair rumpled over and blind-
         ing the eyes;
The march of firemen in their own costumes, the play of mascu-
         line muscle through clean-setting trowsers and waist-straps,
The slow return from the fire, the pause when the bell strikes
         suddenly again, and the listening on the alert,
The natural, perfect, varied attitudes, the bent head, the curv'd
         neck and the counting;
Such-like I love—I loosen myself, pass freely, am at the mother's
         breast with the little child,
Swim with the swimmers, wrestle with wrestlers, march in line with
         the firemen, and pause, listen, count.

3


I knew a man, a common farmer, the father of five sons,
And in them the fathers of sons, and in them the fathers of sons.

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This man was of wonderful vigor, calmness, beauty of person,
The shape of his head, the pale yellow and white of his hair and
         beard, the immeasurable meaning of his black eyes, the
         richness and breadth of his manners,
These I used to go and visit him to see, he was wise also,
He was six feet tall, he was over eighty years old, his sons were
         massive, clean, bearded, tan-faced, handsome,
They and his daughters loved him, all who saw him loved him,
They did not love him by allowance, they loved him with personal
         love,
He drank water only, the blood show'd like scarlet through the
         clear-brown skin of his face,
He was a frequent gunner and fisher, he sail'd his boat himself,
         he had a fine one presented to him by a ship-joiner, he
         had fowling-pieces presented to him by men that loved
         him,
When he went with his five sons and many grand-sons to hunt or
         fish, you would pick him out as the most beautiful and
         vigorous of the gang,
You would wish long and long to be with him, you would wish to
         sit by him in the boat that you and he might touch each
         other.

4


I have perceiv'd that to be with those I like is enough,
To stop in company with the rest at evening is enough,
To be surrounded by beautiful, curious, breathing, laughing flesh
         is enough,
To pass among them or touch any one, or rest my arm ever so
         lightly round his or her neck for a moment, what is this
         then?
I do not ask any more delight, I swim in it as in a sea.

There is something in staying close to men and women and look-
         ing on them, and in the contact and odor of them, that
         pleases the soul well,
All things please the soul, but these please the soul well.

5


This is the female form,
A divine nimbus exhales from it from head to foot,
It attracts with fierce undeniable attraction,
I am drawn by its breath as if I were no more than a helpless
         vapor, all falls aside but myself and it,
Books, art, religion, time, the visible and solid earth, and what was
         expected of heaven or fear'd of hell, are now consumed,

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Mad filaments, ungovernable shoots play out of it, the response
         likewise ungovernable,
Hair, bosom, hips, bend of legs, negligent falling hands all dif
         fused, mine too diffused,
Ebb stung by the flow and flow stung by the ebb, love-flesh swell-
         ing and deliciously aching,
Limitless limpid jets of love hot and enormous, quivering jelly of
         love, white-blow and delirious juice,
Bridegroom night of love working surely and softly into the pros-
         trate dawn,
Undulating into the willing and yielding day,
Lost in the cleave of the clasping and sweet-flesh'd day.

This the nucleus—after the child is born of woman, man is born
         of woman,
This the bath of birth, this the merge of small and large, and the
         outlet again.

Be not ashamed women, your privilege encloses the rest, and is the
         exit of the rest,
You are the gates of the body, and you are the gates of the soul.

The female contains all qualities and tempers them,
She is in her place and moves with perfect balance,
She is all things duly veil'd, she is both passive and active,
She is to conceive daughters as well as sons, and sons as well as
         daughters.

As I see my soul reflected in Nature,
As I see through a mist, One with inexpressible completeness,
         sanity, beauty,
See the bent head and arms folded over the breast, the Female
         I see.

6


The male is not less the soul nor more, he too is in his place,
He too is all qualities, he is action and power,
The flush of the known universe is in him,
Scorn becomes him well, and appetite and defiance become him
         well,
The wildest largest passions, bliss that is utmost, sorrow that is
         utmost become him well, pride is for him,
The full-spread pride of man is calming and excellent to the soul,
Knowledge becomes him, he likes it always, he brings every thing
         to the test of himself,

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Whatever the survey, whatever the sea and the sail he strikes
         soundings at last only here,
(Where else does he strike soundings except here?)

The man's body is sacred and the woman's body is sacred,
No matter who it is, it is sacred—is it the meanest one in the
         laborers' gang?
Is it one of the dull-faced immigrants just landed on the wharf?
Each belongs here or anywhere just as much as the well-off, just
         as much as you,
Each has his or her place in the procession.

(All is a procession,
The universe is a procession with measured and perfect motion.)

Do you know so much yourself that you call the meanest ignorant?
Do you suppose you have a right to a good sight, and he or she
         has no right to a sight?
Do you think matter has cohered together from its diffuse float,
         and the soil is on the surface, and water runs and vegeta-
         tion sprouts,
For you only, and not for him and her?

7


A man's body at auction,
(For before the war I often go to the slave-mart and watch the
         sale,)
I help the auctioneer, the sloven does not half know his business.

Gentlemen look on this wonder,
Whatever the bids of the bidders they cannot be high enough for it,
For it the globe lay preparing quintillions of years without one
         animal or plant,
For it the revolving cycles truly and steadily roll'd.

In this head the all-baffling brain,
In it and below it the makings of heroes.

Examine these limbs, red, black, or white, they are cunning in
         tendon and nerve,
They shall be stript that you may see them.

Exquisite senses, life-lit eyes, pluck, volition,
Flakes of breast-muscle, pliant backbone and neck, flesh not
         flabby, good-sized arms and legs,
And wonders within there yet.

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Within there runs blood,
The same old blood! the same red-running blood!
There swells and jets a heart, there all passions, desires, reachings,
         aspirations,
(Do you think they are not there because they are not express'd in
         parlors and lecture-rooms?)

This is not only one man, this the father of those who shall be
         fathers in their turns,
In him the start of populous states and rich republics,
Of him countless immortal lives with countless embodiments and
         enjoyments.

How do you know who shall come from the offspring of his off-
         spring through the centuries?
(Who might you find you have come from yourself, if you could
         trace back through the centuries?)

8


A woman's body at auction,
She too is not only herself, she is the teeming mother of mothers,
She is the bearer of them that shall grow and be mates to the
         mothers.

Have you ever loved the body of a woman?
Have you ever loved the body of a man?
Do you not see that these are exactly the same to all in all nations
         and times all over the earth?

If any thing is sacred the human body is sacred,
And the glory and sweet of a man is the token of manhood
         untainted,
And in man or woman a clean, strong, firm-fibred body, is more
         beautiful than the most beautiful face.

Have you seen the fool that corrupted his own live body? or the
         fool that corrupted her own live body?
For they do not conceal themselves, and cannot conceal themselves.

9


O my body! I dare not desert the likes of you in other men and
         women, nor the likes of the parts of you,
I believe the likes of you are to stand or fall with the likes of the
         soul, (and that they are the soul,)

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I believe the likes of you shall stand or fall with my poems, and
         that they are my poems,
Man's, woman's, child's, youth's, wife's, husband's, mother's, father's,
         young man's, young woman's poems,
Head, neck, hair, ears, drop and tympan of the ears,
Eyes, eye-fringes, iris of the eye, eyebrows, and the waking or
         sleeping of the lids,
Mouth, tongue, lips, teeth, roof of the mouth, jaws, and the jaw-
         hinges,
Nose, nostrils of the nose, and the partition,
Cheeks, temples, forehead, chin, throat, back of the neck, neck-
         slue,
Strong shoulders, manly beard, scapula, hind-shoulders, and the
         ample side-round of the chest,
Upper-arm, armpit, elbow-socket, lower-arm, arm-sinews, arm-
         bones,
Wrist and wrist-joints, hand, palm, knuckles, thumb, forefinger,
         finger-joints, finger-nails,
Broad breast-front, curling hair of the breast, breast-bone, breast-
         side,
Ribs, belly, backbone, joints of the backbone,
Hips, hip-sockets, hip-strength, inward and outward round, man-
         balls, man-root,
Strong set of thighs, well carrying the trunk above,
Leg-fibres, knee, knee-pan, upper-leg, under-leg,
Ankles, instep, foot-ball, toes, toe-joints, the heel;
All attitudes, all the shapeliness, all the belongings of my or your
         body or of any one's body, male or female,
The lung-sponges, the stomach-sac, the bowels sweet and clean,
The brain in its folds inside the skull-frame,
Sympathies, heart-valves, palate-valves, sexuality, maternity,
Womanhood, and all that is a woman, and the man that comes
         from woman,
The womb, the teats, nipples, breast-milk, tears, laughter, weeping,
         love-looks, love-perturbations and risings,
The voice, articulation, language, whispering, shouting aloud,
Food, drink, pulse, digestion, sweat, sleep, walking, swimming,
Poise on the hips, leaping, reclining, embracing, arm-curving and
         tightening,
The continual changes of the flex of the mouth, and around the
         eyes,
The skin, the sunburnt shade, freckles, hair,
The curious sympathy one feels when feeling with the hand the
         naked meat of the body,
The circling rivers the breath, and breathing it in and out,

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The beauty of the waist, and thence of the hips, and thence down-
         ward toward the knees,
The thin red jellies within you or within me, the bones and the
         marrow in the bones,
The exquisite realization of health;
O I say these are not the parts and poems of the body only, but
         of the soul,
O I say now these are the soul!

A WOMAN WAITS FOR ME.


A WOMAN waits for me, she contains all, nothing is lacking,
Yet all were lacking if sex were lacking, or if the moisture of the
         right man were lacking.

Sex contains all, bodies, souls,
Meanings, proofs, purities, delicacies, results, promulgations,
Songs, commands, health, pride, the maternal mystery, the seminal
         milk,
All hopes, benefactions, bestowals, all the passions, loves, beauties,
         delights of the earth,
All the governments, judges, gods, follow'd persons of the earth,
These are contain'd in sex as parts of itself and justifications of
         itself.

Without shame the man I like knows and avows the deliciousness
         of his sex,
Without shame the woman I like knows and avows hers.

Now I will dismiss myself from impassive women,
I will go stay with her who waits for me, and with those women
         that are warm-blooded and sufficient for me,
I see that they understand me and do not deny me,
I see that they are worthy of me, I will be the robust husband
         of those women.

They are not one jot less than I am,
They are tann'd in the face by shining suns and blowing winds,
Their flesh has the old divine suppleness and strength,
They know how to swim, row, ride, wrestle, shoot, run, strike,
         retreat, advance, resist, defend themselves,
They are ultimate in their own right—they are calm, clear, well-
         possess'd of themselves.

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I draw you close to me, you women,
I cannot let you go, I would do you good,
I am for you, and you are for me, not only for our own sake, but
         for others' sakes,
Envelop'd in you sleep greater heroes and bards,
They refuse to awake at the touch of any man but me.

It is I, you women, I make my way,
I am stern, acrid, large, undissuadable, but I love you,
I do not hurt you any more than is necessary for you,
I pour the stuff to start sons and daughters fit for these States, I
         press with slow rude muscle,
I brace myself effectually, I listen to no entreaties,
I dare not withdraw till I deposit what has so long accumulated
         within me.

Through you I drain the pent-up rivers of myself,
In you I wrap a thousand onward years,
On you I graft the grafts of the best-beloved of me and America,
The drops I distil upon you shall grow fierce and athletic girls,
         new artists, musicians, and singers,
The babes I beget upon you are to beget babes in their turn,
I shall demand perfect men and women out of my love-spendings,
I shall expect them to interpenetrate with others, as I and you
         interpenetrate now,
I shall count on the fruits of the gushing showers of them, as I
         count on the fruits of the gushing showers I give now,
I shall look for loving crops from the birth, life, death, immortality,
         I plant so lovingly now.

SPONTANEOUS ME.


SPONTANEOUS me, Nature,
The loving day, the mounting sun, the friend I am happy with,
The arm of my friend hanging idly over my shoulder,
The hillside whiten'd with blossoms of the mountain ash,
The same late in autumn, the hues of red, yellow, drab, purple,
         and light and dark green,
The rich coverlet of the grass, animals and birds, the private
         untrimm'd bank, the primitive apples, the pebble-stones,
Beautiful dripping fragments, the negligent list of one after an-
         other as I happen to call them to me or think of them,
The real poems, (what we call poems being merely pictures,)
The poems of the privacy of the night, and of men like me,

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This poem drooping shy and unseen that I always carry, and that
         all men carry,
(Know once for all, avow'd on purpose, wherever are men like
         me, are our lusty lurking masculine poems,)
Love-thoughts, love-juice, love-odor, love-yielding, love-climbers,
         and the climbing sap,
Arms and hands of love, lips of love, phallic thumb of love, breasts
         of love, bellies press'd and glued together with love,
Earth of chaste love, life that is only life after love,
The body of my love, the body of the woman I love, the body
         of the man, the body of the earth,
Soft forenoon airs that blow from the south-west,
The hairy wild-bee that murmurs and hankers up and down, that
         gripes the full-grown lady-flower, curves upon her with
         amorous firm legs, takes his will of her, and holds himself
         tremulous and tight till he is satisfied;
The wet of woods through the early hours,
Two sleepers at night lying close together as they sleep, one with an
         arm slanting down across and below the waist of the other,
The smell of apples, aromas from crush'd sage-plant, mint, birch-
         bark,
The boy's longings, the glow and pressure as he confides to me
         what he was dreaming,
The dead leaf whirling its spiral whirl and falling still and content
         to the ground,
The no-form'd stings that sights, people, objects, sting me with,
The hubb'd sting of myself, stinging me as much as it ever can
         any one,
The sensitive, orbic, underlapp'd brothers, that only privileged
         feelers may be intimate where they are,
The curious roamer the hand roaming all over the body, the
         bashful withdrawing of flesh where the fingers soothingly
         pause and edge themselves,
The limpid liquid within the young man,
The vex'd corrosion so pensive and so painful,
The torment, the irritable tide that will not be at rest,
The like of the same I feel, the like of the same in others,
The young man that flushes and flushes, and the young woman
         that flushes and flushes,
The young man that wakes deep at night, the hot hand seeking to
         repress what would master him,
The mystic amorous night, the strange half-welcome pangs, visions,
         sweats,
The pulse pounding through palms and trembling encircling
         fingers, the young man all color'd, red, ashamed, angry;

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The souse upon me of my lover the sea, as I lie willing and naked,
The merriment of the twin babes that crawl over the grass in the
         sun, the mother never turning her vigilant eyes from them,
The walnut-trunk, the walnut-husks, and the ripening or ripen'd
         long-round walnuts,
The continence of vegetables, birds, animals,
The consequent meanness of me should I skulk or find myself
         indecent, while birds and animals never once skulk or
         find themselves indecent,
The great chastity of paternity, to match the great chastity of
         maternity,
The oath of procreation I have sworn, my Adamic and fresh
         daughters,
The greed that eats me day and night with hungry gnaw, till I
         saturate what shall produce boys to fill my place when I
         am through,
The wholesome relief, repose, content,
And this bunch pluck'd at random from myself,
It has done its work—I toss it carelessly to fall where it may.

ONE HOUR TO MADNESS AND JOY.


ONE hour to madness and joy! O furious! O confine me not!
(What is this that frees me so in storms?
What do my shouts amid lightnings and raging winds mean?)

O to drink the mystic deliria deeper than any other man!
O savage and tender achings! (I bequeath them to you my
         children,
I tell them to you, for reasons, O bridegroom and bride.)

O to be yielded to you whoever you are, and you to be yielded to
         me in defiance of the world!
O to return to Paradise! O bashful and feminine!
O to draw you to me, to plant on you for the first time the lips of
         a determin'd man.

O the puzzle, the thrice-tied knot, the deep and dark pool, all
         untied and illumin'd!
O to speed where there is space enough and air enough at last!
To be absolv'd from previous ties and conventions, I from mine
         and you from yours!
To find a new unthought-of nonchalance with the best of Nature!

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To have the gag remov'd from one's mouth!
To have the feeling to-day or any day I am sufficient as I am.

O something unprov'd! something in a trance!
To escape utterly from others' anchors and holds!
To drive free! to love free! to dash reckless and dangerous!
To court destruction with taunts, with invitations!
To ascend, to leap to the heavens of the love indicated to me!
To rise thither with my inebriate soul!
To be lost if it must be so!
To feed the remainder of life with one hour of fulness and freedom!
With one brief hour of madness and joy.

OUT OF THE ROLLING OCEAN THE CROWD.


OUT of the rolling ocean the crowd came a drop gently to me,
Whispering I love you, before long I die,
I have travel'd a long way merely to look on you to touch you,
For I could not die till I once look'd on you,
For I fear'd I might afterward lose you.

Now we have met, we have look'd, we are safe,
Return in peace to the ocean my love,
I too am part of that ocean my love, we are not so much sepa-
         rated,
Behold the great rondure, the cohesion of all, how perfect!
But as for me, for you, the irresistible sea is to separate us,
As for an hour carrying us diverse, yet cannot carry us diverse for-
         ever;
Be not impatient—a little space—know you I salute the air, the
         ocean and the land,
Every day at sundown for your dear sake my love.

AGES AND AGES RETURNING AT INTERVALS.


AGES and ages returning at intervals,
Undestroy'd, wandering immortal,
Lusty, phallic, with the potent original loins, perfectly sweet,
I, chanter of Adamic songs,
Through the new garden the West, the great cities calling,
Deliriate, thus prelude what is generated, offering these, offering
         myself,
Bathing myself, bathing my songs in Sex,
Offspring of my loins.

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WE TWO, HOW LONG WE WERE FOOL'D.


WE two, how long we were fool'd,
Now transmuted, we swiftly escape as Nature escapes,
We are Nature, long have we been absent, but now we return,
We become plants, trunks, foliage, roots, bark,
We are bedded in the ground, we are rocks,
We are oaks, we grow in the openings side by side,
We browse, we are two among the wild herds spontaneous as
         any,
We are two fishes swimming in the sea together,
We are what locust blossoms are, we drop scent around lanes
         mornings and evenings,
We are also the coarse smut of beasts, vegetables, minerals,
We are two predatory hawks, we soar above and look down,
We are two resplendent suns, we it is who balance ourselves orbic
         and stellar, we are as two comets,
We prowl fang'd and four-footed in the woods, we spring on
          prey,
We are two clouds forenoons and afternoons driving overhead,
We are seas mingling, we are two of those cheerful waves rolling
         over each other and interwetting each other,
We are what the atmosphere is, transparent, receptive, pervious,
         impervious,
We are snow, rain, cold, darkness, we are each product and
         influence of the globe,
We have circled and circled till we have arrived home again, we
         two,
We have voided all but freedom and all but our own joy.

O HYMEN! O HYMENEE!


O HYMEN! O hymenee! why do you tantalize me thus?
O why sting me for a swift moment only?
Why can you not continue? O why do you now cease?
Is it because if you continued beyond the swift moment you
         would soon certainly kill me?

I AM HE THAT ACHES WITH LOVE.


I AM he that aches with amorous love;
Does the earth gravitate? does not all matter, aching, attract all
         matter?
So the body of me to all I meet or know.

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NATIVE MOMENTS.


NATIVE moments—when you come upon me—ah you are here
         now,
Give me now libidinous joys only,
Give me the drench of my passions, give me life coarse and rank,
To-day I go consort with Nature's darlings, to-night too,
I am for those who believe in loose delights, I share the midnight
         orgies of young men,
I dance with the dancers and drink with the drinkers,
The echoes ring with our indecent calls, I pick out some low
         person for my dearest friend,
He shall be lawless, rude, illiterate, he shall be one condemn'd by
         others for deeds done,
I will play a part no longer, why should I exile myself from my
         companions?
O you shunn'd persons, I at least do not shun you,
I come forthwith in your midst, I will be your poet,
I will be more to you than to any of the rest.

ONCE I PASS'D THROUGH A POPULOUS CITY.


ONCE I pass'd through a populous city imprinting my brain for
         future use with its shows, architecture, customs, traditions,
Yet now of all that city I remember only a woman I casually met
         there who detain'd me for love of me,
Day by day and night by night we were together—all else has
         long been forgotten by me,
I remember I say only that woman who passionately clung to me,
Again we wander, we love, we separate again,
Again she holds me by the hand, I must not go,
I see her close beside me with silent lips sad and tremulous.

I HEARD YOU SOLEMN-SWEET PIPES OF THE ORGAN.


I HEARD you solemn-sweet pipes of the organ as last Sunday morn
         I pass'd the church,
Winds of autumn, as I walk'd the woods at dusk I heard your
         long-stretch'd sighs up above so mournful,
I heard the perfect Italian tenor singing at the opera, I heard the
         soprano in the midst of the quartet singing;
Heart of my love! you too I heard murmuring low through one
         of the wrists around my head,
Heard the pulse of you when all was still ringing little bells last
         night under my ear.

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FACING WEST FROM CALIFORNIA'S SHORES.


FACING west from California's shores,
Inquiring, tireless, seeking what is yet unfound,
I, a child, very old, over waves, towards the house of maternity,
         the land of migrations, look afar,
Look off the shores of my Western sea, the circle almost circled;
For starting westward from Hindustan, from the vales of Kash-
         mere,
From Asia, from the north, from the God, the sage, and the
         hero,
From the south, from the flowery peninsulas and the spice islands,
Long having wander'd since, round the earth having wander'd,
Now I face home again, very pleas'd and joyous,
(But where is what I started for so long ago?
And why is it yet unfound?)

AS ADAM EARLY IN THE MORNING.


AS Adam early in the morning,
Walking forth from the bower refresh'd with sleep,
Behold me where I pass, hear my voice, approach,
Touch me, touch the palm of your hand to my body as I pass,
Be not afraid of my body.
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