Brother Of All, With Genesrous Hand
BROTHER of all, with generous hand,
Of thee, pondering on thee, as o'er thy tomb, I and my Soul,
A thought to launch in memory of thee,
A burial verse for thee.
What may we chant, O thou within this tomb?
What tablets, pictures, hang for thee, O millionaire?
--The life thou lived'st we know not,
But that thou walk'dst thy years in barter, 'mid the haunts of
Nor heroism thine, nor war, nor glory.
Yet lingering, yearning, joining soul with thine, 10
If not thy past we chant, we chant the future,
Select, adorn the future.
Lo, Soul, the graves of heroes!
The pride of lands--the gratitudes of men,
The statues of the manifold famous dead, Old World and New,
The kings, inventors, generals, poets, (stretch wide thy vision,
The excellent rulers of the races, great discoverers, sailors,
Marble and brass select from them, with pictures, scenes,
(The histories of the lands, the races, bodied there,
In what they've built for, graced and graved, 20
Monuments to their heroes.)
Silent, my Soul,
With drooping lids, as waiting, ponder'd,
Turning from all the samples, all the monuments of heroes.
While through the interior vistas,
Noiseless uprose, phantasmic (as, by night, Auroras of the North,)
Lambent tableaux, prophetic, bodiless scenes,
In one, among the city streets, a laborer's home appear'd,
After his day's work done, cleanly, sweet-air'd, the gaslight
The carpet swept, and a fire in the cheerful stove.
In one, the sacred parturition scene,
A happy, painless mother birth'd a perfect child.
In one, at a bounteous morning meal,
Sat peaceful parents, with contented sons.
In one, by twos and threes, young people,
Hundreds concentering, walk'd the paths and streets and roads,
Toward a tall-domed school.
In one a trio, beautiful,
Grandmother, loving daughter, loving daughter's daughter, sat, 40
Chatting and sewing.
In one, along a suite of noble rooms,
'Mid plenteous books and journals, paintings on the walls, fine
Were groups of friendly journeymen, mechanics, young and old,
All, all the shows of laboring life,
City and country, women's, men's and children's,
Their wants provided for, hued in the sun, and tinged for once with
Marriage, the street, the factory, farm, the house-room, lodging-
Labor and toil, the bath, gymnasium, play-ground, library,
The student, boy or girl, led forward to be taught;
The sick cared for, the shoeless shod--the orphan father'd and
The hungry fed, the houseless housed;
(The intentions perfect and divine,
The workings, details, haply human.)
O thou within this tomb,
From thee, such scenes--thou stintless, lavish Giver,
Tallying the gifts of Earth--large as the Earth,
Thy name an Earth, with mountains, fields and rivers.
Nor by your streams alone, you rivers, 60
By you, your banks, Connecticut,
By you, and all your teeming life, Old Thames,
By you, Potomac, laving the ground Washington trod--by you Patapsco,
You, Hudson--you, endless Mississippi--not by you alone,
But to the high seas launch, my thought, his memory.
Lo, Soul, by this tomb's lambency,
The darkness of the arrogant standards of the world,
With all its flaunting aims, ambitions, pleasures.
(Old, commonplace, and rusty saws,
The rich, the gay, the supercilious, smiled at long, 70
Now, piercing to the marrow in my bones,
Fused with each drop my heart's blood jets,
Swim in ineffable meaning.)
Lo, Soul, the sphere requireth, portioneth,
To each his share, his measure,
The moderate to the moderate, the ample to the ample.
Lo, Soul, see'st thou not, plain as the sun,
The only real wealth of wealth in generosity,
The only life of life in goodness?
Walt Whitman's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Brother Of All, With Genesrous Hand by Walt Whitman )
Did you read them?
- Billboards, Tony Adah
- Lovely emergence, hasmukh amathalal
- Realize, my dear, gajanan mishra
- Should not mind, hasmukh amathalal
- Bridegroom to His Bride, Frank Avon
- What Is Life?, Abhishek Dubey
- Useless exercise, hasmukh amathalal
- Never letting, hasmukh amathalal
- Truth is in south, gajanan mishra
- Student, Paul Sebastian
Poem of the Day
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
- Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
- Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
- Dreams, Langston Hughes
- Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(20 September 1902 – 7 March 1971)
- Heather Burns
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
Harold R Hunt Sr
(Jan 14 1954)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)