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A Woman Waits for Me

Part of the cluster CHILDREN OF ADAM.


1 A WOMAN waits for me—she contains all, nothing is  
Yet all were lacking, if sex were lacking, or if the  
 moisture of the right man were lacking.
2Sex contains all, Bodies, Souls, meanings, proofs, purities, delicacies, 
 results, promulgations,
Songs, commands, health, pride, the maternal mystery, 
 the semitic milk,
All hopes, benefactions, bestowals, All the passions, loves, beauties, delights of the  
All the governments, judges, gods, follow'd persons of  
 the earth,
These are contain'd in sex, as parts of itself, and jus- 
 tifications of itself.
3Without shame the man I like knows and avows the  
 deliciousness of his sex,
Without shame the woman I like knows and avows  
4Now I will dismiss myself from impassive women, I will go stay with her who waits for me, and with  
 those women that are warm-blooded and suffi- 
 cient for me:
I see that they understand me, and do not deny me: I see that they are worthy of me—I will be the robust  
 husband of those women.
5They are not one jot less than I am, They are tann'd in the face by shining suns and  
 blowing winds,
Their flesh has the old divine suppleness and strength,   [ begin page 109 ]ppp.00473.109.jpg They know how to swim, row, ride, wrestle, shoot, run, 
 strike, retreat, advance, resist, defend them- 
They are ultimate in their own right—they are calm, 
 clear, well-possess'd of themselves.
6I draw you close to me, you women! I cannot let you go, I would do you good, I am for you, and you are for me, not only for our  
 own sake, but for others' sakes;
Evelop'd in you sleep greater heroes and bards, They refuse to awake at the touch of any man but me:
7It is I, you women—I make my way, I am stern, acrid, large, undissuadable—but I love you, I do not hurt you any more than is necessary for you, I pour the stuff to start sons and daughters fit for  
 These States—I press with slow rude muscle,
I brace myself effectually—I listen to no entreaties, I dare not withdraw till I deposit what has so long  
 accumulated within me.
8Through you I drain the pent-up rivers of myself, In you I wrap a thousand onward years, On you I graft the grafts of the best-beloved of me  
 and America,
The drops I distil upon you shall grow fierce and ath- 
 letic girls, new artists, musicians, and singers,
The babes I beget upon you are to beget babes in  
 their turn,
I shall demand perfect men and women out of my  
I shall expect them to interpenetrate with others, as I  
 and you interpenetrate now,
I shall count on the fruits of the gushing showers of  
 them, as I count on the fruits of the gushing  
 showers I give now,
I shall look for loving crops from the birth, life, death, 
 immortality, I plant so lovingly now.

Part of the cluster CHILDREN OF ADAM.

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