Verse > Walt Whitman > Leaves of Grass
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Walt Whitman (1819–1892).  Leaves of Grass.  1900.

330. In Former Songs


1

IN former songs Pride have I sung, and Love, and passionate, joyful Life,
 
But here I twine the strands of Patriotism and Death. 
  
And now, Life, Pride, Love, Patriotism and Death, 
To you, O FREEDOM, purport of all! 
(You that elude me most—refusing to be caught in songs of mine,)         5
I offer all to you. 
  
2

’Tis not for nothing, Death,
 
I sound out you, and words of you, with daring tone—embodying you, 
In my new Democratic chants—keeping you for a close, 
For last impregnable retreat—a citadel and tower,  10
For my last stand—my pealing, final cry. 


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