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I SAW THE VISION OF ARMIES (Walt Whitman)

I saw the vision of armies;
And I saw, as in noiseless dreams, hundreds of battle-flags,
Borne through the smoke of the battles and pierced with missiles, I saw them,
And carried, hither and yon through the smoke, and torn and bloody;
And at last but a few shreds of 'the flags left on the staffs, (and all in silence,)
And the staffs all splintered and broken.

I saw battle-corpses, myriads of them,
And the white skeletons of young men, I saw them;
I saw the debris and debris of all dead soldiers,
But I saw they were not as was thought;
They themselves were fully at rest, they suffered not;
The living remained and suffered, the mother suffered,
And the wife and the child and the musing comrade suffered,
And the armies that remained suffered..



Lyrics taken from http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/j/joan_baez/i_saw_the_vision_of_armies.html

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