"But they are not the Me myself"

An old woman called this morning, trying to remember a poem.  She thought it might be Whitman.  It listed various disasters, ending with something like, "but that is not me."

She was right.  It was Walt Whitman's Song of Myself.

...People I meet, the effect upon me of my early life or the ward and city I live in, or the nation,
The latest dates, discoveries, inventions, societies, authors old and new,
My dinner, dress, associates, looks, compliments, dues,
The real or fancied indifference of some man or woman I love,
The sickness of one of my folks or of myself, or ill-doing or loss or lack of money, or depressions or exaltations,
Battles, the horrors of fratricidal war, the fever of doubtful news, the fitful events;
These come to me days and nights and go from me again,
But they are not the Me myself.

No comments: