O Walt, my Walt: An homage

I’m afraid my multitudes
Have become fractious
No longer content to simply
Contradict myself
I fly off the handle
At the slightest whim

Come tell me, old man
What great love-burst
Straightened your back
In your days of reckoning?

How did you feel when those
Crusted and cracked hands you held
In the stifling wards of Washington
Ceased finally to stir?

The sweet cleansing heat
Of salty tears and sweat
How you must have howled!
How the moon must have shuddered
To hear it!

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