Leaves of Grass (1881-82)

contents   |  previous   |  next



AS toilsome I wander'd Virginia's woods,
To the music of rustling leaves kick'd by my feet, (for 'twas
I mark'd at the foot of a tree the grave of a soldier;
Mortally wounded he and buried on the retreat, (easily all could
         I understand,)
The halt of a mid-day hour, when up! no time to lose—yet this
         sign left,
On a tablet scrawl'd and nail'd on the tree by the grave,
Bold, cautious, true, and my loving comrade.

Long, long I muse, then on my way go wandering,
Many a changeful season to follow, and many a scene of life,

View Page 241
View Page 241

Yet at times through changeful season and scene, abrupt, alone,
         or in the crowded street,
Comes before me the unknown soldier's grave, comes the inscrip-
         tion rude in Virginia's woods,
Bold, cautious, true, and my loving comrade.
contents   |  previous   |  next