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Title: Little Bells Last Night

Creator: Walt Whitman

Date: October 12, 1861

Publication information: New York Leader 12 October 1861: [2].

Source: Our transcription is based on a digital image of an original issue.

Whitman Archive ID: per.00077

Contributors to digital file: Elizabeth Lorang, April Lambert, and Susan Belasco




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LITTLE BELLS LAST NIGHT.1

———

BY WALT WHITMAN.

———

War-suggesting trumpets, I heard you;
And you I heard beating, you chorus of small and
large drums;
You round-lipp'd cannons!—you I heard, thunder-
cracking, saluting the frigate from France;
I heard you, solemn-sweet pipes of the organ, as last
Sunday morn I pass'd the church;
Winds of Autumn!—as I walk'd the woods at dusk, I
heard your long-strech'd sighs, up above, so
mournful;
I heard the perfect Italian tenor, singing at the opera;
I heard the soprano, in the midst of the quartet
singing;
Lady! you, too, I heard, as with white arms in your
parlor, you play'd for me delicious music on the
harp;
Heart of my love!—you, too, I heard, murmuring
low, through one of the wrists around my head—
Heard the pulse of you, when all was still, ringing
little bells last night under my ear.

Notes:

1. Revised as "I Heard You Solemn Sweet Pipes of the Organ" in Sequel to Drum-Taps (1865–66). [back]


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