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English Poetry III: From Tennyson to Whitman.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

763. Good-Bye

GOOD-BYE, proud world! I’m going home:

Thou art not my friend, and I’m not thine.

Long through thy weary crowds I roam;

A river-ark on the ocean brine,

Long I’ve been tossed like the driven foam;

But now, proud world! I’m going home.

Good-bye to Flattery’s fawning face;

To Grandeur with his wise grimace;

To upstart Wealth’s averted eye;

To supple Office, low and high;

To crowded halls, to court and street;

To frozen hearts and hasting feet;

To those who go, and those who come;

Good-bye, proud world! I’m going home.

I am going to my own hearth-stone,

Bosomed in yon green hills alone,—

A secret nook in a pleasant land,

Whose groves the frolic fairies planned;

Where arches green, the livelong day,

Echo the blackbird’s roundelay,

And vulgar feet have never trod

A spot that is sacred to thought and God.

O, when I am safe in my sylvan home,

I tread on the pride of Greece and Rome;

And when I am stretched beneath the pines,

Where the evening star so holy shines,

I laugh at the lore and the pride of man,

At the sophist schools and the learned clan;

For what are they all, in their high conceit,

When man in the bush with God may meet?