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

85. As I lay with Head in your Lap, Camerado

AS I lay with my head in your lap, Camerado,

The confession I made I resume—what I said to you in the open air I resume:

I know I am restless, and make others so;

I know my words are weapons, full of danger, full of death;

(Indeed I am myself the real soldier;

It is not he, there, with his bayonet, and not the red-striped artilleryman;)

For I confront peace, security, and all the settled laws, to unsettle them;

I am more resolute because all have denied me, than I could ever have been had all accepted me;

I heed not, and have never heeded, either experience, cautions, majorities, nor ridicule;

And the threat of what is call’d hell is little or nothing to me;

And the lure of what is call’d heaven is little or nothing to me;

…Dear camerado! I confess I have urged you onward with me, and still urge you, without the least idea what is our destination,

Or whether we shall be victorious, or utterly quell’d and defeated.