(Nor for you, for one alone,
Blossoms and branches green to coffins all I bring,
For fresh as the morning,
thus would I chant a song for you
O sane and sacred death.
All over bouquets of roses,
O death, I cover you over with roses and early lilies,
But mostly and now the
lilac that blooms the first,
Copious I break, I break the sprigs from the bushes,
With loaded arms I come,
pouring for you,
For you and the coffins all of you O death.)
O western orb sailing the heaven,
Now I know what you must have meant as a month since I
I walk'd in silence the transparent shadowy night,
As I saw you had something to tell as you bent to me
As you droop'd from the sky low down as if to my side,
(while the other stars all look'd
As we wander'd together the solemn night, (for something I
know not what kept me from sleep,)
the night advanced, and I saw on the rim of the west how
full you were of woe,
As I stood on the rising
ground in the breeze in the cool
As I watch'd where you pass'd and was lost in the
black of the night,
As my soul in its trouble dissatisfied sank, as where you sad
dropt in the night, and was gone.
Sing on there in the swamp,
O singer bashful and tender, I hear your notes, I hear your
I hear, I
come presently, I understand you,
But a moment I linger, for the lustrous star has detain'd me,
my departing comrade holds and detains me.
O how shall I warble myself for the dead one there I loved?
And how shall I deck my song for the large
sweet soul that
And what shall my perfume be for the grave of him I love?
Sea-winds blown from east and west,
Blown from the Eastern sea and blown from the Western sea,
there on the prairies meeting,
These and with these and the breath of my chant,
I'll perfume the grave of
him I love.
O what shall I hang on the chamber walls?
And what shall the pictures be that I hang on the walls,
adorn the burial-house of him I love?
Pictures of growing spring and farms and homes,
With the Fourth-month eve at sundown, and the gray
lucid and bright,
With floods of the yellow gold of the gorgeous, indolent,
sinking sun, burning,
expanding the air,
With the fresh sweet herbage under foot, and the pale green
leaves of the trees prolific,
the distance the flowing glaze, the breast of the river, with
a wind-dapple here and there,
hills on the banks, with many a line against the sky,
And the city at hand with dwellings so
dense, and stacks of
And all the scenes of life and the workshops, and the workmen
Lo, body and soul this land,
My own Manhattan with spires, and the sparkling and
hurrying tides, and
The varied and ample land, the South and the North in the light,
Ohio's shores and flashing
And ever the far-spreading prairies cover'd with grass and corn.