Walt Whitman: Poems

Chants Democratic: Flux

Of these years I sing,

How they pass through convulsed pains, as through parturitions;

How America illustrates birth, gigantic youth, the promise, the sure

fulfilment, despite of people--Illustrates evil as well as good;

How many hold despairingly yet to the models departed, caste, myths,

obedience, compulsion, and to infidelity;

How few see the arrived models, the athletes, the States--or see freedom or

spirituality--or hold any faith in results.

But I see the athletes--and I see the results glorious and inevitable--and

they again leading to other results;

How the great cities appear--How the Democratic masses, turbulent, wilful,

as I love them,

How the whirl, the contest, the wrestle of evil with good, the sounding and

resounding, keep on and on;

How society waits unformed, and is between things ended and things begun;

How America is the continent of glories, and of the triumph of freedom, and

of the Democracies, and of the fruits of society, and of all that

is begun;

And how the States are complete in themselves--And how all triumphs and

glories are complete in themselves, to lead onward,

And how these of mine, and of the States, will in their turn be convulsed,

and serve other parturitions and transitions.

And how all people, sights, combinations, the Democratic masses, too,

serve--and how every fact serves,

And how now, or at any time, each serves the exquisite transition of Death.