We Two—How Long We were Fool’d.

WE two—how long we were fool’d!
Now transmuted, we swiftly escape, as Nature escapes;
We are Nature—long have we been absent, but now we return;
We become plants, leaves, foliage, roots, bark;
We are bedded in the ground—we are rocks;
We are oaks—we grow in the openings side by side;
We browse—we are two among the wild herds, spontaneous as any;
We are two fishes swimming in the sea together;
We are what the locust blossoms are—we drop scent around the lanes, mornings and
We are also the coarse smut of beasts, vegetables, minerals;
We are two predatory hawks—we soar above, and look down;
We are two resplendent suns—we it is who balance ourselves, orbic and stellar—we
are as two comets;
We prowl fang’d and four-footed in the woods—we spring on prey;
We are two clouds, forenoons and afternoons, driving overhead;
We are seas mingling—we are two of those cheerful waves, rolling over each other, and
interwetting each other;
We are what the atmosphere is, transparent, receptive, pervious, impervious:
We are snow, rain, cold, darkness—we are each product and influence of the globe;
We have circled and circled till we have arrived home again—we two have;
We have voided all but freedom, and all but our own joy.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Walt Whitman's poem We Two—How Long We were Fool’d.


  1. De Santis says:

    Geniuse-victim of circumstantial and self victimizationed love-for the mercy of the truly loved…capturing soul and spirit of self sacrificing true love for a truest loved…my soul cries out to thee Walt- with a prayer and kiss sent up to heaven X0

  2. Christopher says:

    My fiance and I are considering having this poem included as a reading for our upcoming wedding. I read it as referring to that way of being in the world I have found that somehow transcends everything that went before—a crystalline, heightened awareness of the richness of the world and our potential connectedness to it, of possibilities that I could not even have dreamed of previously, before I knew John. I also find the imagery amazing— I especially love imagining us as two cheerful waves that roll over each other and “interwet” each other. How terrific is that (not to mention erotic)??

  3. Daniel says:

    This poem was posted…on my birthday. and that was the last day..night..I saw love. Sad…but it was probably the first real day I came to really find myself. that only lasted for so long. One day..I will write it all.


    • De Santis says:

      Daniel are you ready to write again- never surrender to the future for you are loved- more than.you can imagine- love will arrive when you love yourself and are ready to embrace the real thing. God bless

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Do you have any comments, criticism, paraphrasis or analysis of this poem that you feel would assist other visitors in understanding the meaning or the theme of this poem by Walt Whitman better? If accepted, your analysis will be added to this page of American Poems. Together we can build a wealth of information, but it will take some discipline and determination.