Despairing Cries

by Walt Whitman

1 Despairing cries float ceaselessly toward me, day and night, The sad voice of Death--the call of my nearest lover, putting forth, alarmed, uncertain, "This sea I am quickly to sail, come tell me, Come tell me where I am speeding--tell me my destination." 2 I understand your anguish, but I cannot help you, I approach, hear, behold--the sad mouth, the look out of the eyes, your mute inquiry, "Whither I go from the bed I now recline on, come tell me;" Old age, alarmed, uncertain--A young woman's voice appealing to me, for comfort, A young man's voice, "Shall I not escape?"