Reverend T. S. Deacon Economos
Minister and Registered Wedding Officiant in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Poems by Walt Whitman

When I Heard at the Close of the Day

When I heard at the close of the day how my name had been receiv'd with plaudits in the capitol, still it was not a happy night for me that follow'd,

And else when I carous'd, or when my plans were accomplish'd, still I was not happy,

But the day when I rose at dawn from the bed of perfect health, refresh'd, singing, inhaling the ripe breath of autumn,

When I saw the full moon in the west grow pale and disappear in the morning light,

When I wander'd alone over the beach, and undressing bathed, laughing with the cool waters, and saw the sun rise,

And when I thought how my dear friend my lover was on his way coming,

O then I was happy, O then each breath tasted sweeter, and all that day my food nourish'd me more, and the beautiful day pass'd well,

And the next came with equal joy, and with the next at evening came my friend,

And that night while all was still I heard the waters roll slowly continually up the shores,

I heard the hissing rustle of the liquid and sands as directed to me whispering to congratulate me,

For the one I love most lay sleeping by me under the same cover in the cool night,

In the stillness in the autumn moonbeams his face was inclined toward me,

And his arm lay lightly around my breast - and that night I was happy.

Fast Anchor'd Eternal O Love

Fast-Anchor'd eternal O love! O woman I love!

O bride! O wife! more resistless than I can tell, the thought of you!

Then separate, as disembodied or another born,

Ethereal, the last athletic reality, my consolation,

I ascend, I float in the regions of your love O man,

O sharer of my roving life.

To A Stranger

Passing stranger! you do not know how longingly I look upon you,

You must be he I was seeking, or she I was seeking, (it comes to me as of a dream,)

I have somewhere surely lived a life of joy with you,

All is recall'd as we flit by each other, fluid, affectionate,
chaste, matured,

You grew up with me, were a boy with me or a girl with me,

I ate with you and slept with you, your body has become not yours only nor left my body mine only,

You give me the pleasure of your eyes, face, flesh, as we pass, you take of my beard, breast, hands, in return,

I am not to speak to you, I am to think of you when I sit alone or wake at night alone,

I am to wait, I do not doubt I am to meet you again,

I am to see to it that I do not lose you.

Other Readings

Walt Whitman

(1819 - 1992)

Whitman was born in South Huntington, New York, Long Island, New York, in 1819, the second of nine children. In 1823, Whitman attended public school in Brooklyn, New York. Six years later he began working as a printer's apprentice and later in New York City as a printer.

The Tammany Society made him editor of a number of newspapers including the Brooklyn Eagle.

One short story, The Child's Champion, 1842, is considered to be the most important of these early works. as it established the foundation for his lifelong theme of the redemptive power of manly love.

The first edition of Leaves of Grass was self-publishedin 1855. Both public and critical response was muted. A year later, the second edition, including a letter of congratulations from Ralph Waldo Emerson, was published.

By 1860, Walt Whitman was working as a clerk in the Department of the Interior but was fired when it became known that he was the author of Leaves of Grass.

Whitman died on March 26, 1892, and was buried in Camden's Harleigh Cemetery, in a simple tomb that he designed.
Life's greatest happiness is to be convinced we are loved.

~ Victor Hugo ~

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