I have heard what the talkers were talking, the talk of the beginning and the end, But I do not talk of the beginning or the end.
There was never any more inception than there is now, Nor any more youth or age than there is now, And will never be any more perfection than there is now, Nor any more heaven or hell than there is now.
Urge and urge and urge, Always the procreant urge of the world. Out of the dimness opposite equals advance, always substance and increase, always sex, Always a knit of identity, always distinction, always a breed of life.
To elaborate is no avail, learned and unlearned feel that it is so.
Sure as the most certain sure, plumb in the uprights, well entreatied, braced in the beams, Stout as a horse, affectionate, haughty, electrical, I and this mystery here we stand."
Excerpt from ‘Song of Myself’ from ‘Leaves of Grass’ by Walt Whitman, published in 1855. [This is the text for the second installment of Clayton Cubitt’s ‘Hysterical Literature’ project - which is excellent in itself but seriously: WHITMAN’s THE BOSS.]