THOU orb aloft full-dazzling! thou hot October noon! Flooding with sheeny light the gray beach sand, The sibilant near sea with vistas far and foam, And tawny streaks and shades and spreading blue; O sun of noon rufulgent! my special word to thee.
Hear me illustrious! Thy lover me, for always I have loved thee, Even as basking babe, then happy boy alone by some wood edge, thy touching-distant beams enough, Or man matured, or young or old, as now to thee I launch my invocation.
(Thou canst not with thy dumbness me deceive, I know before the fitting man all Nature yields, Though answering not in words, the skies, trees, hear his voiceâ€”and thou O sun, As for thy throes, thy perturbations, sudden breaks and shafts of flame gigantic, I understand them, I know those flames, those perturbations well.)
Thou that with fructifying heat and light, Oâ€™er myriad farms, oâ€™er lands and waters North and South, Oâ€™er Mississippiâ€™s endless course, oâ€™er Texasâ€™ grassy plains, Kanadaâ€™s woods, Oâ€™er all the globe that turns its face to thee shining in space, Thou that impartially infoldest all, not only continents, seas, Thou that to grapes and weeds and little wild flowers givest so liberally, Shed, shed thyself on mine and me, with but a fleeting ray out of thy million millions, Strike through these chants.
Nor only launch thy subtle dazzle and thy strength for these, Prepare the later afternoon of me myselfâ€”prepare my lengthening shadows, Prepare my starry nights.