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Song For All Seas, All Ships Analysis



Author: Poetry of Walt Whitman Type: Poetry Views: 339

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TO-DAY a rude brief recitative,

Of ships sailing the Seas, each with its special flag or ship-signal;

Of unnamed heroes in the ships--Of waves spreading and spreading, far

as the eye can reach;

Of dashing spray, and the winds piping and blowing;

And out of these a chant, for the sailors of all nations,

Fitful, like a surge.



Of Sea-Captains young or old, and the Mates--and of all intrepid

Sailors;

Of the few, very choice, taciturn, whom fate can never surprise, nor

death dismay,

Pick'd sparingly, without noise, by thee, old Ocean--chosen by

thee,10

Thou Sea, that pickest and cullest the race, in Time, and unitest

Nations!

Suckled by thee, old husky Nurse--embodying thee!

Indomitable, untamed as thee.



(Ever the heroes, on water or on land, by ones or twos appearing,

Ever the stock preserv'd, and never lost, though rare--enough for

seed preserv'd.)





Flaunt out O Sea, your separate flags of nations!

Flaunt out, visible as ever, the various ship-signals!

But do you reserve especially for yourself, and for the soul of man,

one flag above all the rest,

A spiritual woven Signal, for all nations, emblem of man elate above

death,20

Token of all brave captains, and all intrepid sailors and mates,

And all that went down doing their duty;

Reminiscent of them--twined from all intrepid captains, young or old;

A pennant universal, subtly waving, all time, o'er all brave sailors,

All seas, all ships.










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