From Leaves of Grass
, by Walt Whitman
To thee old cause!
Thou peerless, passionate
, good cause,
Thou stern, remorseless, sweet
Deathless throughout the ages, races, lands,
After a strange
sad war, great war for thee,
(I think all war
through time was really fought, and ever will be really fought, for thee,)
These chants for thee, the eternal march of thee.
(A war O soldiers not for itself alone,
Far, far more stood silently waiting behind, now to advance in this book.)
of many orbs!
Thou seething principle! thou well-kept, latent germ
! thou centre!
Around the idea of thee the war revolving,
With all its angry
and vehement play of causes,
(With vast results to come for thrice a thousand years,)
These recitatives for thee,--my book and the war are one,
Merged in its spirit
I and mine, as the contest hinged on thee,
As a wheel
on its axis
turns, this book unwitting to itself,
Around the idea of thee.