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

174. To a Certain Cantatrice

HERE, take this gift!

I was reserving it for some hero, speaker, or General,

One who should serve the good old cause, the great Idea, the progress and freedom of the race;

Some brave confronter of despots—some daring rebel;

—But I see that what I was reserving, belongs to you just as much as to any.