Walt Whitman Essays Leaves Grass

Walt Whitman Essays Leaves Grass-10
Having had some success – a novel and newspaper pieces – he became chief editor of the Brooklyn Eagle, but lost this position when his opposition to the spread of slavery clashed with the views of the newspaper’s owner.

Having had some success – a novel and newspaper pieces – he became chief editor of the Brooklyn Eagle, but lost this position when his opposition to the spread of slavery clashed with the views of the newspaper’s owner.

Celebrations will be especially joyful around his birthday on May 31 and in New York City, whose citizens were often depicted in his poems.

But the poetry many people now love won him notoriety before it won him fame. He was born in 1819 and grew up in and around Brooklyn, moving often as his family tried to make money from farming and real estate. He worked by turns in Manhattan and Brooklyn as a printer’s apprentice, a schoolteacher and a newspaper publisher, before resolving to become a writer.

Carolyn Masel does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Walt Whitman, America’s most admired poet.

Words or phrases are often repeated at the beginning of a series of lines, building up a rhythmical pattern.

However, Whitman is careful to break the pattern before it can become mere rhetoric.They are alive and well somewhere, The smallest sprout shows there is really no death […] All goes onward and outward, nothing collapses, And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.In this passage the grass signifies equality, by making no distinction where it grows.A “hieroglyphic” symbol might need an expert – such as Whitman – to translate it, but it grows “uniform[ly]”, giving everyone the same rights and the same chances to mean something in the great poem that is America, as Whitman saw it.As a result of Whitman’s habit of revision, we can witness the growth of many poems.We don’t know how or why Whitman began to invent his extraordinary poetry.In 1842 he listened to “The Poet”, a lecture in which philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson called for a national bard who could write about the US in all its diversity.Far-swooping elbow’d earth - rich apple-blossom’d earth! (“Song of Myself”, canto 21) Leaves of Grass was Whitman’s sole book of poetry.Rather than publish several collections containing new poems, he revised and expanded this single volume, so that the first edition of 12 poems eventually became a thick book of close to 400 poems.The reader is constantly being called to attention: Smile O voluptuous cool-breath’d earth! Earth of departed sunset - earth of the mountains misty-topt!Earth of the vitreous pour of the full moon just tinged with blue!

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