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Walt Whitman
1819 - 1892
( )

181992, American poet, b. West Hills, N.Y. Considered by many to be the greatest of all American poets, Walt Whitman celebrated the freedom and dignity of the individual and sang the praises of democracy and the brotherhood of man. His Leaves of Grass, unconventional in both content and technique, is probably the most influential volume of poems in the history of American literature.continue at Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. (Copyright 2000 Columbia University Press).


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AS I lay with my head in your lap, Camerado,
The confession I made I resumewhat I said to you in the open air I resume:
I know I am restless, and make others so;
I know my words are weapons, full of danger, full of death;
(Indeed I am myself the real soldier;
It is not he, there, with his bayonet, and not the red-striped artilleryman;)
For I confront peace, security, and all the settled laws, to unsettle them;
I am more resolute because all have denied me, than I could ever have been had all accepted me;
I heed not, and have never heeded, either experience, cautions, majorities, nor ridicule;
And the threat of what is calld hell is little or nothing to me;
And the lure of what is calld heaven is little or nothing to me;
...Dear camerado! I confess I have urged you onward with me, and still urge you, without the least idea what is our destination,
Or whether we shall be victorious, or utterly quelld and defeated.


Walt Whitman


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