In Whitman's Hand


About this Item

Title: The Great Laws do not treasure chips

Creator: Walt Whitman

Date: Between 1850 and 1855

Whitman Archive ID: duk.00264

Source: Trent Collection of Whitmaniana, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University. Transcribed from digital images of the original. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the manuscripts, see our statement of editorial policy.

Editorial note: This manuscript was probably composed between 1850 and 1855, when Whitman was writing the poems of the first (1855) edition of Leaves of Grass. It includes draft lines that appeared in a revised form in the eleventh poem of that edition. The poem was ultimately titled "Who Learns My Lesson Complete?"

Related item: On the back of this leaf are draft lines that appeared in a revised form in the sixth poem of the 1855 edition of Leaves of Grass. See duk.00905.

Contributors to digital file: Nicole Gray, Andrew Jewell, Kenneth Price, Brett Barney, Nick Krauter, and Amy Hezel

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The Great Laws do not treasure chips, and or
stick for the odd cent;

I am of the same fashion—for I am their

I rate myself high—I receive no small sums;

I must have my full price—whoever enjoys me.

I feel satisfied my visit will be worthy of me
and of my Hosts and Favorites;

I leave it to them how to receive me.—

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