Verse > Walt Whitman > Leaves of Grass

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

154. Turn, O Libertad

TURN, O Libertad, for the war is over, 
(From it and all henceforth expanding, doubting no more, resolute, sweeping the world,) 
Turn from lands retrospective, recording proofs of the past; 
From the singers that sing the trailing glories of the past; 
From the chants of the feudal world—the triumphs of kings, slavery, caste;         5
Turn to the world, the triumphs reserv’d and to come—give up that backward world; 
Leave to the singers of hitherto—give them the trailing past; 
But what remains, remains for singers for you—wars to come are for you; 
(Lo! how the wars of the past have duly inured to you—and the wars of the present also inure:) 
—Then turn, and be not alarm’d, O Libertad—turn your undying face,  10
To where the future, greater than all the past, 
Is swiftly, surely preparing for you. 



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