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

83. I Sit and Look Out


I SIT and look out upon all the sorrows of the world, and upon all oppression and shame; 
I hear secret convulsive sobs from young men, at anguish with themselves, remorseful after deeds done; 
I see, in low life, the mother misused by her children, dying, neglected, gaunt, desperate; 
I see the wife misused by her husband—I see the treacherous seducer of young women; 
I mark the ranklings of jealousy and unrequited love, attempted to be hid—I see these sights on the earth;         5
I see the workings of battle, pestilence, tyranny—I see martyrs and prisoners; 
I observe a famine at sea—I observe the sailors casting lots who shall be kill’d, to preserve the lives of the rest; 
I observe the slights and degradations cast by arrogant persons upon laborers, the poor, and upon negroes, and the like; 
All these—All the meanness and agony without end, I sitting, look out upon, 
See, hear, and am silent.  10


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