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These , I, Singing In Spring Analysis

Author: Poetry of Walt Whitman Type: Poetry Views: 315

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THESE, I, singing in spring, collect for lovers,

(For who but I should understand lovers, and all their sorrow and


And who but I should be the poet of comrades?)

Collecting, I traverse the garden, the world--but soon I pass the


Now along the pond-side--now wading in a little, fearing not the wet,

Now by the post-and-rail fences, where the old stones thrown there,

pick'd from the fields, have accumulated,

(Wild-flowers and vines and weeds come up through the stones, and

partly cover them--Beyond these I pass,)

Far, far in the forest, before I think where I go,

Solitary, smelling the earthy smell, stopping now and then in the


Alone I had thought--yet soon a troop gathers around me,10

Some walk by my side, and some behind, and some embrace my arms or


They, the spirits of dear friends, dead or alive--thicker they come,

a great crowd, and I in the middle,

Collecting, dispensing, singing in spring, there I wander with them,

Plucking something for tokens--tossing toward whoever is near me;

Here! lilac, with a branch of pine,

Here, out of my pocket, some moss which I pull'd off a live-oak in

Florida, as it hung trailing down,

Here, some pinks and laurel leaves, and a handful of sage,

And here what I now draw from the water, wading in the pondside,

(O here I last saw him that tenderly loves me--and returns again,

never to separate from me,

And this, O this shall henceforth be the token of comrades--this

Calamus-root shall,20

Interchange it, youths, with each other! Let none render it back!)

And twigs of maple, and a bunch of wild orange, and chestnut,

And stems of currants, and plum-blows, and the aromatic cedar:

These, I, compass'd around by a thick cloud of spirits,

Wandering, point to, or touch as I pass, or throw them loosely from


Indicating to each one what he shall have--giving something to each;

But what I drew from the water by the pond-side, that I reserve,

I will give of it--but only to them that love, as I myself am capable

of loving.


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