Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

Colorado men are we,

From the peaks gigantic, from the great sierras and the high plateaus,

From the mine and from the gully, from the hunting trail we come, Pioneers! O pioneers!

From Nebraska, from Arkansas,

Central inland race are we, from Missouri, with the continental blood intervein'd,

All the hands of comrades clasping, all the Southern, all the Northern,

Pioneers! O pioneers!

O resistless restless race!

O beloved race in all! O my breast aches with tender love for all!
OI mourn and yet exult, I am rapt with love for all,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Raise the mighty mother mistress,

Waving high the delicate mistress, over all the starry mistress, (bend your heads all,)

Raise the fang'd and warlike mistress, stern, impassive, weapon'd

mistress,

Pioneers! O pioneers!

See my children, resolute children,

By those swarms upon our rear we must never yield or falter,
Ages back in ghostly millions frowning there behind us urging,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

On and on the compact ranks,

With accessions ever waiting, with the places of the dead quickly

fill'd,

Through the battle, through defeat, moving yet and never stopping, Pioneers! O pioneers!

O to die advancing on!

Are there some of us to droop and die? has the hour come? Then upon the march we fittest die, soon and sure the gap is fill'd. Pioneers! O pioneers!

All the pulses of the world,

Falling in they beat for us, with the Western movement beat, Holding single or together, steady moving to the front, all for us, Pioneers! O pioneers!

[ocr errors]

Life's involv'd and varied pageants,

All the forms and shows, all the workmen at their work,

All the seamen and the landsmen, all the masters with their slaves, Pioneers! O pioneers!

All the hapless silent lovers,

All the prisoners in the prisons, all the righteous and the wicked, All the joyous, all the sorrowing, all the living, all the dying, Pioneers! O pioneers!

I too with my soul and body,

We, a curious trio, picking, wandering on our way,

Through these shores amid the shadows, with the apparitions

pressing,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Lo, the darting bowling orb!

Lo, the prother orbs around, all the clustering sons and planets, All the dazzling days, all the mystic nights with dreams, Pioneers! O pioneers!

These are of us, they are with us,

All for primal needed work, while the followers there in embryo wait behind,

We to-day's procession heading, we the route for travel clearing, Pioneers! O pioneers!

O you daughters of the West!

O you young and elder daughters! O you mothers and you wives! Never must you be divided, in our ranks you move united, Pioneers! O pioneers!

Minstrels latent on the prairies!

(Shrouded bards of other lands, you may rest, you have done your work,)

Soon I hear you coming warbling, soon you rise and tramp amid us, Pioneers! O pioneers!

Not for delectations sweet,

Not the cushion and the slipper, not the peaceful and the studious, Not the riches safe and palling, not for us the tame enjoyment, Pioneers! O pioneers!

Do the feasters gluttonous feast?

Do the corpulent sleepers sleep? have they lock'd and bolted doors? Still be ours the diet hard, and the blanket on the ground,

Pioneers! O pioneers!

[ocr errors]

Has the night descended?

Was the road of late so toilsome? did we stop discouraged nodding on our way?

Yet a passing hour I yield you in your tracks to pause oblivious, Pioneers! O pioneers!

Till with sound of trumpet,

Far, far off the daybreak call-hark! how loud and clear I hear it wind,

Swift! to the head of the army!-swift! spring to your places, Pioneers! O pioneers!

TO YOU.

WHOEVER you are, I fear you are walking the walks of dreams, I fear these supposed realities are to melt from under your and hands,

feet

Even now your features, joys, speech, house, trade, manners, troubles, follies, costume, crimes, dissipate away from you, Your true soul and body appear before me, They stand forth out of affairs, out of commerce, shops, work, farms, clothes, the house, buying, selling, eating, drinking, suffering, dying.

Whoever you are, now I place my hand upon you, that you be my

poem,

I whisper with my lips close to your ear,

I have loved many women and men, but I love none better than you.

OI have been dilatory and dumb,

I should have made my way straight to you long ago,

I should have blabb'd nothing but you, I should have chanted nothing but you.

I will leave all and come and make the hymns of you,

None has understood you, but I understand you,

None has done justice to you, you have not done justice to yourself,

None but has found you imperfect, I only find no imperfection in

you,

None but would subordinate you, I only am he who will never consent to subordinate you,

I only am he who places over you no master, owner, better, God, beyond what waits intrinsically in yourself.

[ocr errors]

Painters have painted their swarming groups and the centre-figure of all,

From the head of the centre-figure spreading a nimbus of goldcolor'd light,

But I paint myriads of heads, but paint no head without its nimbus of gold-color'd light,

From my hand from the brain of every man and woman it streams, effulgently flowing forever.

OI could sing such grandeurs and glories about you!

You have not known what you are, you have slumber'd upon yourself all your life,

Your eyelids have been the same as closed most of the time,

What you have done returns already in mockeries,

(Your thrift, knowledge, prayers, if they do not return in mockeries, what is their return?)

The mockeries are not you,

Underneath them and within them I see you lurk,
I pursue you where none else has pursued you,

Silence, the desk, the flippant expression, the night, the accustom'd
routine, if these conceal you from others or from yourself,
they do not conceal you from me,

The shaved face, the unsteady eye, the impure complexion, if these balk others they do not balk me,

The pert apparel, the deform'd attitude, drunkenness, greed, premature death, all these I part aside.

There is no endowment in man or woman that is not tallied in

you,

There is no virtue, no beauty in man or woman, but as good is in you,

No pluck, no endurance in others, but as good is in you,
No pleasure waiting for others, but an equal pleasure waits for you.

As for me, I give nothing to any one except I give the like carefully to you,

I sing the songs of the glory of none, not God, sooner than I sing the songs of the glory of you.

Whoever you are! claim your own at any hazard!

These shows of the East and West are tame compared to you, These immense meadows, these interminable rivers, you are immense and interminable as they,

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

These furies, elements, storms, motions of Nature, throes of apparent dissolution, you are he or she who is master or mistress over them,

Master or mistress in your own right over Nature, elements, pain, passion, dissolution.

The hopples fall from your ankles, you find an unfailing sufficiency, Old or young, male or female, rude, low, rejected by the rest, whatever you are promulges itself,

Through birth, life, death, burial, the means are provided, nothing

is scanted,

Through angers, losses, ambition, ignorance, ennui, what you are picks its way.

FRANCE,

The 18th Year of these States.

A GREAT year and place,

A harsh discordant natal scream out-sounding, to touch the mother's heart closer than any yet.

I walk'd the shores of my Eastern sea,

Heard over the waves the little voice,

Saw the divine infant where she woke mournfully wailing, amid the roar of cannon, curses, shouts, crash of falling buildings, Was not so sick from the blood in the gutters running, nor from the single corpses, nor those in heaps, nor those borne away in the tumbrils,

Was not so desperate at the battues of deathat the repeated fusillades of the guns.

was not so shock'd

Pale, silent, stern, what could I say to that long-accrued retribution?

Could I wish humanity different?

Could I wish the people made of wood and stone?

Or that there be no justice in destiny or time?

O Liberty! O mate for me!

Here too the blaze, the grape-shot and the axe, in reserve, to fetch them out in case of need,

Here too, though long represt, can never be destroy'd,
Here too could rise at last murdering and ecstatic,
Here too demanding full arrears of vengeance.

Hence I sign this salute over the sea,

And I do not deny that terrible red birth and baptism,

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »