Walt Whitman: ‘To The States’


Why reclining, interrogating? why myself and all drowsing? 

What deepening twilight—scum floating atop of the waters, 

Who are they as bats and night-dogs askant in the capitol? 

What a filthy Presidentiad! (O South, your torrid suns! O North, your arctic freezings!) 

Are those really Congressmen? are those the great Judges? is that the President? 

Then I will sleep awhile yet, for I see that these States sleep, for reasons; 

(With gathering murk, with muttering thunder and lambent shoots we all duly awake, 

South, North, East, West, inland and seaboard, we will surely awake.)

— Walt Whitman (1819-1892) From Leaves of Grass