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Tears
by Walt Whitman


TEARS! tears! tears!
In the night, in solitude, tears;
On the white shore dripping, dripping, suck'd in by the sand;
Tears--not a star shining--all dark and desolate;
Moist tears from the eyes of a muffled head:
--O who is that ghost?--that form in the dark, with tears?
What shapeless lump is that, bent, crouch'd there on the sand?
Streaming tears--sobbing tears--throes, choked with wild cries;
O storm, embodied, rising, careering, with swift steps along the
beach;
O wild and dismal night storm, with wind! O belching and
desperate! 10
O shade, so sedate and decorous by day, with calm countenance and
regulated pace;
But away, at night, as you fly, none looking--O then the unloosen'd
ocean,
Of tears! tears! tears!