Walt Whitman: Book XXXI, Part 4

Part 4

Sail, sail thy best, ship of Democracy, Of value is thy freight, 'tis not the Present only, The Past is also stored in thee, Thou holdest not the venture of thyself alone, not of the Western     continent alone, Earth's resume entire floats on thy keel O ship, is steadied by thy spars, With thee Time voyages in trust, the antecedent nations sink or     swim with thee, With all their ancient struggles, martyrs, heroes, epics, wars, thou     bear'st the other continents, Theirs, theirs as much as thine, the destination-port triumphant; Steer then with good strong hand and wary eye O helmsman, thou     carriest great companions, Venerable priestly Asia sails this day with thee, And royal feudal Europe sails with thee.