Accept, fuse, rehabilitate

After all not to create only,
   or found only,
But to bring perhaps from afar
   what is already founded,
To give it our own identity,
    average, limitless, free,
To fill the gross the torpid bulk
    with vital religious fire,
Not to repel or destroy so much as accept,
    fuse, rehabilitate,
To obey as well as command,
    to follow more than to lead . . .

—Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass

Originally published at

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