Walt Whitman, one of the world’s good wishes
is the one that wishes you here today.
To sing, shake hands to the world’s peoples
To listen, cock-ear’d, in a way of wonder,
To all the others have got to say;
Then with your own embracing message,
Lead all correctly, or lead us astray;
For either is goodness with God, and gay,
Like song of a thrush or screech of a jay;
They’ll mingle miles on, from each other learning
That life’s delightful at work or play.
So enter in spirit the sharp contentions
Of brothers belling each other at bay;
And soften the snout of the menacing cannon
With the scent and bloom of a lilac spray.