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Walt Whitman (1819–1892). Leaves of Grass. 1900.

147. Thick-Sprinkled Bunting

THICK-SPRINKLED bunting! Flag of stars!

Long yet your road, fateful flag!—long yet your road, and lined with bloody death!

For the prize I see at issue, at last is the world!

All its ships and shores I see, interwoven with your threads, greedy banner!

—Dream’d again the flags of kings, highest born, to flaunt unrival’d?

O hasten, flag of man! O with sure and steady step, passing highest flags of kings,

Walk supreme to the heavens, mighty symbol—run up above them all,

Flag of stars! thick-sprinkled bunting!