Poetry: Miracles


by Walt Whitman

Why! who makes much of a miracle?
As to me, I know of nothing else but miracles,
Whether I walk the streets of Manhattan,
Or dart my sight over the roofs of houses toward the sky,
Or wade with naked feet along the beach, just in the edge of the
Or stand under trees in the woods,
Or talk by day with any one I love–or sleep in the bed at night with
any one I love,
Or sit at table at dinner with my mother,
Or look at strangers opposite me riding in the car,
Or watch honey-bees busy around the hive, of a summer forenoon,
Or animals feeding in the fields,
Or birds–or the wonderfulness of insects in the air,
Or the wonderfulness of the sun-down–or of stars shining so quiet
and bright,
Or the exquisite, delicate, thin curve of the new moon in spring;
Or whether I go among those I like best, and that like me best–
mechanics, boatmen, farmers,
Or among the savans–or to the soiree–or to the opera,
Or stand a long while looking at the movements of machinery,
Or behold children at their sports,
Or the admirable sight of the perfect old man, or the perfect old
Or the sick in hospitals, or the dead carried to burial,
Or my own eyes and figure in the glass;
These, with the rest, one and all, are to me miracles,
The whole referring–yet each distinct, and in its place.

To me, every hour of the light and dark is a miracle,
Every cubic inch of space is a miracle,
Every square yard of the surface of the earth is spread with the
Every foot of the interior swarms with the same;
Every spear of grass–the frames, limbs, organs, of men and women,
and all that concerns them,
All these to me are unspeakably perfect miracles.

To me the sea is a continual miracle;
The fishes that swim–the rocks–the motion of the waves–the ships,
with men in them,
What stranger miracles are there?


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7 thoughts on “Poetry: Miracles

      1. In short it is about going to the “balcony” from the floor in order to see the bigger picture and/or to gain perspective, to see the wood from the trees. I have first seen it used in an article of positive psychology about reflecting one´s life and life situations from the balcony as an objective observer for fresh views, but a quick googling shows it´s been used in leadership books as well (perhaps been derived from there, am not sure yet). The balcony perspective can be used in many ways, I could think.

        “As a leader, you may find your day’s activities as excitingly busy as on a dance floor, but it may help if you occasionally go up to ‘the balcony,’ advises a book from Harvard Business School Press. Achieving a ‘balcony perspective’ means taking yourself out of the dance, in your mind, even if only for a moment, explain Ronald A. Heifetz and Marty Linsk-” http://bookpeek.blogspot.fi/2009/02/achieve-balcony-perspective.html


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