Quotation by Walt Whitman

Formless stacks of bodies and bodies by themselves, dabs of flesh
upon the masts and spars,
Cut of cordage, dangle of rigging, slight shock of the soothe of
waves,
Black and impassive guns, litter of powder-parcels, strong scent,
A few large stars overhead, silent and mournful shining,
Delicate sniffs of sea-breeze, smells of sedgy grass and fields by
the shore, death-messages given in charge to survivors,
The hiss of the surgeon's knife, the gnawing teeth of his saw,
Wheeze, cluck, swash of falling blood, short wild scream, and long,
dull, tapering groan,
These so, these irretrievable.
Walt Whitman (1819–1892), U.S. poet. Song of Myself (Fr. XXXVI, l. 937–944). . .

The Complete Poems [Walt Whitman]. Francis Murphy, ed. (1975; repr. 1986) Penguin Books.
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