hours continuing long…

Hours continuing long, sore and heavy-hearted,

Hours of the dusk, when I withdraw to a lonesome and un-frequented
spot, seating myself, leaning my face in my
hands;

Hours sleepless, deep in the night, when I go forth, speeding
swiftly the country roads, or through the city streets, or
pacing miles and miles, stifling plaintive cries;

Hours discouraged, distracted—for the one I cannot content
myself without, soon I saw him content himself without
me;

Hours when I am forgotten, (O weeks and months are pass-
ing, but I believe I am never to forget!)

Sullen and suffering hours! (I am ashamed—but it is useless
—I am what I am;)

Hours of my torment—I wonder if other men ever have the
like, out of the like feelings?

Is there even one other like me—distracted—his friend, his
lover, lost to him?

Is he too as I am now? Does he still rise in the morning, de-
jected, thinking who is lost to him? and at night, awak-
ing, think who is lost?

Does he too harbor his friendship silent and endless? harbor
his anguish and passion?

Does some stray reminder, or the casual mention of a name,
bring the fit back upon him, taciturn and deprest?

Does he see himself reflected in me? In these hours, does he
see the face of his hours reflected?

— Walt Whitman —

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