Walt Whitman

We Two—How Long We were Fool’d

WE two—how long we were fool’d! Now transmuted, we swiftly escape, as Nature escapes; We are Nature—long have we been absent, but now we return; We become plants, leaves, foliage, roots, bark; We are bedded in the ground—we are rocks; We are oaks—we grow in the openings side by side; We browse—we are two among the wild herds, spontaneous as any; We are two fishes swimming in the sea together; We are what the locust blossoms are—we drop scent around the lanes, mornings and evenings; We are also the coarse smut of beasts, vegetables, minerals; We are two predatory hawks—we soar above, and look down; We are two resplendent suns—we it is who balance ourselves, orbic and stellar—we are as two comets; We prowl fang’d and four-footed in the woods—we spring on prey; We are two clouds, forenoons and afternoons, driving overhead; We are seas mingling—we are two of those cheerful waves, rolling over each other, and interwetting each other; We are what the atmosphere is, transparent, receptive, pervious, impervious: We are snow, rain, cold, darkness—we are each product and influence of the globe; We have circled and circled till we have arrived home again—we two have; We have voided all but freedom, and all but our own joy.

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