Verse > Walt Whitman > Leaves of Grass

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

NOTES  80–89

80. American Feuillage

First published in 1860.

  l. 1  1860. After line 1 reads “Always me joined with you, whoever you are!”

  l. 35  1860 reads “turpentine and tar.”

  1860 reads “There is the turpentine distillery.”

  l. 64  1860 reads “the individuality and sovereignty of The State.”

  l. 79  “war” added in 1870.

81. Song of the Broad-Axe

First published in 1856.

  l. 1  1856 ’60. For “Weapon” read “Broad Axe.”

  l. 33  “the outset anywhere” added in 1860. After line 33, 1856 reads “The Year! of These States, the weapons that year began with, scythe, pitch-fork, club, horse-pistol.”

  l. 58  “striking” added in 1860.

  l. 101  1856 ’60. For “great” read “greatest.”

  l. 108  1856 ’60. For “great” read “greatest.”

  l. 110  1856 ’60. For “great” read “greatest.”

  l. 116  1856 ’60. After line 116 read “Where there may be seen going every day in the streets, with their arms familiar to the shoulders of their friends.”

  l. 118  1856 ’60. After line 118 read “Where behavior is the finest of the fine arts.”

  l. 121  “never-ending” added in 1860.

  l. 125  1856 ’60 read “Where children are taught from the jump that they are to be laws to themselves,” etc.

  l. 129  1856 ’60 add “and are appealed to by the orator the same as the men.”

  l. 134  1856 ’60. For “great” read “greatest.”

  l. 135  1856 ’60 read “How beggarly appear poems, arguments, orations, before an electric deed.”

  l. 146  After line 146, 1856 ’60 ’67 read:

  “Was that your best? Were those your vast and solid?
Riches, opinions, politics, institutions to part obediently from the path of one man or woman!
The centuries and all authority, to be trod under the foot-soles of one man or woman!”

  l. 156  1856 ’60 add “and the bloody body laid in the hollow of the great stone.”

  l. 160  1856 ’60 for “long, long” read “incalculably.”

  l. 173  1856. For “lords” reads “princes.”

  l. 202  1856 reads “or St. John’s.”

  l. 203  “or on the Columbia” added in 1860.

  l. 211  “and canal” added in 1870.

  l. 213  1856. For “Eastern and Western Seas” reads “Atlantic and Pacific.”

  l. 227  1856 ’60. After line 227 read “The shape of the pill-box, the disgraceful ointment-box, the nauseous application, and him or her applying it.”

  l. 231  1856 ’60. After line 227 read “The shape of the slats of the bed of a corrupted body, the bed of the corruption of gluttony or alcoholic drinks.”

  l. 233  1856 ’60 ’67 read “the sickening dangling of the rope.”

  l. 239  After line 239, 1856 ’60 read

“Their shapes arise, the shapes of full-sized men!
Men taciturn yet loving, used to the open air, and the manners of the open air,
Saying their ardor in native forms, saying the old response,
Take what I have then, (saying fain,) take the pay you approached for,
Take the white tears of my blood, if that is what you are after.”

  l. 249  After line 249, 1856 ’60 read

  “His shape arises,
Arrogant, masculine, naive, rowdyish,
Laugher, weeper, worker, idler, citizen, countryman,
Saunterer of woods, stander upon hills, summer swimmer in rivers or by the sea,
Of pure American breed, of reckless health, his body perfect, free from taint from top to toe, free forever from headache and dyspepsia, clean-breathed,
Ample-limbed, a good feeder, weight a hundred and eighty pounds, full-blooded, six feet high, forty inches round the breast and back,
Countenance sun-burnt, bearded, calm, unrefined,
Reminder of animals, meeter of savage and gentleman on equal terms,
Attitudes lithe and erect, costume free, neck gray and open, of slow movement on foot,
Passer of his right arm round the shoulders of his friends, companion of the street,
Persuader always of people to give him their sweetest touches, and never their meanest,
A Manhattanese bred, fond of Brooklyn, fond of Broadway, fond of the life of the wharves and the great ferries,
Enterer everywhere, welcomed everywhere, easily understood after all,
Never offering others, always offering himself, corroborating his phrenology,
Voluptuous, inhabitive, combative, conscientious, alimentive, intuitive, of copious friendship, sublimity, firmness, self-esteem, comparison, individuality, form, locality, eventuality,
Avowing by life, manners, works, to contribute illustrations of results of The States,
Teacher of the unquenchable creed, namely, egotism,
Inviter of others continually henceforth to try their strength against his.

The main shapes arise!*
Shapes of Democracy, final—result of centuries,
Shapes of those that do not joke with life, but are in earnest with life,
Shapes, ever projecting other shapes,
Shapes of a hundred Free States, begetting another hundred north and south,
Shapes of turbulent manly cities,
Shapes of an untamed breed of young men, and natural persons,
Shapes of the women fit for These States,
Shapes of the composition of all the varieties of the earth,
Shapes of the friends and home-givers of the whole earth,
Shapes bracing the whole earth, and braced with the whole earth.”

  *1856 reads

“The shapes arise!
Shapes of America, shapes of centuries.”

  l. 252  After line 252, 1867 reads “Shapes of a hundred Free States begetting another hundred.”

82. Song of the Open Road

First published in 1856. In that edition and that of 1860 under title of “Poem of the Road.”

  l. 4  “myself” added in 1867.

  l. 15  1856 ’60 read “Your road I travel and look around!”

  l. 26  1856 ’60 ’67. After line 26 read

  “You animals moving serenely over the earth!
You birds that wing yourselves through the air! you insects!
You sprouting growths from the farmers’ fields! you stalks and weeds by the fences!”

  l. 28  1856 ’60 for “unseen” read “curious.”

  l. 50  Line 50 added in 1870.

  l. 59  1856 ’60 ’67. For “space” read “air.”

  l. 74  1856 ’60 ’67. Line 74 begins “Here is space—here a great,” etc.

  l. 88  1856 ’60 ’67 read “The animals, the past, the future, light, space, majesty, love, if they,” etc.

  l. 96  1856 ’60 read “The efflux of the soul comes through beautiful gates of laws, provoking questions.”

  l. 196  1856 reads “You must not stay in your house, though you built it,” etc.

  l. 203  1856 ’60 read “No husband, no wife, no friend, no lover, so trusted as to hear the confession.”

  l. 204  1856 ’60 add “Open and above-board it goes.”

  l. 207  1856 ’60 add “among their families.”

  l. 219  1856. For “desertions” reads “contentions.”

83. I Sit and Look Out

First published in 1860.

84. Me Imperturbe

First published in 1860.

  l. 8  1860 reads “to be lived,” etc.

86. Crossing Brooklyn Ferry

First published in 1856 under title of “Sun-Down Poem.”

  l. 1  1856 reads “Flood-tide of the river, flow on!” etc.

  l. 4  1856 “returning home” added in 1860.

  l. 29  1856 reads “December sea-gulls.”

  l. 60  1856 reads “I too lived.” 1860 adds “(I was of old Brooklyn.)” 1867 reads as above.

  l. 81  1856 ’60 read “free, friendly and proud.”

  l. 97  1856 ’60 ’67 add “without fail, either now, or then, or henceforth.”

  l. 98  Line 98 added in 1870.

  l. 115  After line 115, 1856 ’60 ’67 read “Bully for you! you proud, friendly, free Manhattanese.”

  l. 117  After line 117, 1856 ’60 ’67 read “Blab, blush, lie, steal, you or I or any one after us.”

87. With Antecedents

First published in 1860.

  l. 23  1860 reads “as for me.” 1867 adds “(torn, stormy,”) etc.

88. Now List to my Morning’s Romanza

First published in 1855. In edition of 1856 under title of “Poem of the Poet.”

  l. v  Lines 1 and 2 added in 1867. “I tell the signs of the Answerer” added in 1870.

  l. 6  1855 ’56 ’60 ’67. For “stand” read “stood.”

  1855 ’56 ’60 ’67. For “take” read “took.”

  l. 7  1855 ’56 ’60 ’67. Line 7 reads “And I answered for his brother, and for men, and I answered for the Poet, and sent these signs.”

  l. 12  “(so tell I my morning’s romanza;)” added in 1867.

  l. 40  1855 ’56 ’60. For “soldier” read “captain.”

  l. 49  1855 ’56. For “Paumanok Sound” read “Delaware.”

  l. 52  1855 ’56 ’60. After line 52 add:

  “Do [“Do” added in 1856] you think it would be good to be the writer of melodious verses?
Well, it would be good to be the writer of melodious verses;
But what are verses beyond the flowing character you could have? or beyond beautiful manners and behavior?
Or beyond one manly or affectionate deed of an apprentice-boy? or old woman? or man that has been in prison, or is likely to be in prison?”

89. Indications, The

First published in 1860.

  l. 1  Line 1 added in 1867.

  l. 10  “the Answerer” added in 1870.

  l. 14  “true” added in 1870.

  l. 15  Lines 15 and 16 added in 1870.

  l. 21  “the answerer” added in 1870.

  l. 22  “the answerer” added in 1870.


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