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WALT WHITMAN

1819-1892

751                                        The Imprisoned Soul

AT the last, tenderly,
From the walls of the powerful, fortressd house,
From the clasp of the knitted locksfrom the keep of the
      well-closed doors,
Let me be wafted.
Let me glide noiselessly forth;
With the key of softness unlock the lockswith a whisper
Set ope the doors, O soul!
Tenderly! be not impatient!
(Strong is your hold, O mortal flesh!
Strong is your hold, O love!)

752                                        O Captain! My Captain!

O CAPTAIN! my Captain! our fearful trip is done,
The ship has weatherd every rack, the prize we sought
is won,
The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting,
While follow eyes the steady keel, the vessel grim and daring;
      But O heart! heart! heart!
       O the bleeding drops of red!
         Where on the deck my Captain lies,
           Fallen cold and dead.
O Captain! my Captain! rise up and hear the bells;
Rise upfor you the flag is flungfor you the bugle trills,
For you bouquets and ribbond wreathsfor you the shores
    crowding,
For you they call, the swaying mass, their eager faces turning;
     Here, Captain! dear father!
       This arm beneath your head!
         It is some dream that on the deck
           Youve fallen cold and dead.

My Captain does not answer, his lips are pale and still,
My father does not feel my arm, he has no pulse nor will;
The ship is anchord safe and sound, its voyage closed and
   done,
From fearful trip the victor ship comes in with object won;
     Exult, O shores! and sing, O bells!
       But I, with mournful tread,
         Walk the deck my Captain lies,
           Fallen cold and dead.

 

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