“Stranger, if you passing meet me and desire to speak to me,
why should you not speak to me?
And why should I not speak to you?”
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass, 1900.
* Though the first edition was published in 1855, Whitman spent his entire life writing and re-writing Leaves of Grass, revising it in several editions until his death. This resulted in vastly different editions over four decades—the first a small book of twelve poems and the last a compilation of over 400 poems.