fetching it to me with full hands;
How could I answer the child?
I do not know what it is any more than she.
I guess it must be the flag of my disposition,
out of hopeful green stuff woven.
Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord,
A scented gift and remembrancer designedly dropped,
Bearing the owner's name someway in the corners,
that we may see and remark, and say Whose?
Or I guess the grass is itself a child,
the produced babe of the vegetation. . . .
What do you think has become of the young and old men?
What do you think has become of the women and children?
They are alive and well somewhere;
The smallest sprouts show there is really no death,
And if ever there was it led forward life,
and does not wait at the end to arrest it,
And ceased the moment life appeared.
All goes onward and outward, nothing collapses,
And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.
by Walt Whitman, 1819 - 1892
American poet, essayist, journalist, humanist
from Song of Myself ~ Part 6
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