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On the Beach at Night Alone

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Lindsey Rakich

on 5 December 2014

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Transcript of On the Beach at Night Alone

On the beach at night alone,
As the old mother sways her to and fro singing her husky song,
As I watch the bright stars shining, I think a thought of the clef
of the universes and of the future.
A vast similitude interlocks all,
All spheres, grown, ungrown, small, large, suns, moons, planets,
All distances of place however wide,
All distances of time, all inanimate forms,
All souls, all living bodies though they be ever so different, or in
different worlds,
All gaseous, watery, vegetable, mineral processes, the fishes, the brutes,
All nations, colors, barbarisms, civilizations, languages,
All identities that have existed or may exist on this globe, or any globe,
All lives and deaths, all of the past, present, future,
This vast similitude spans them, and always has spann'd,
And shall forever span them and compactly hold and enclose them.

Thesis
Conclusion
Throughout Whitman's poem he shows that there always shall be a special bond between earth, mankind and nature. He shows the equality and connection that is shared through symbols, repetition and other forms of figurative language. He gets the reader to see the realism view of the world by using prime examples that reveal its much bigger than mankind and what we can fathom. Humanity, nature and this universe all rely on resources to survive. We are all one.
Structure
Two Stanzas
14 Lines
Free Verse: No rhyme or specific pattern
Use of symbols with some use of figurative language
Uses of Imagery
Shifts from reality's view to revelation view (Shift after the 1st stanza)
Repetition (All and span)
Analysis of stanza one
"On the beach at night alone" (Whitman). Here the author creates an imperative image in the readers head of them alone, on the beach, at nighttime taking in the beauty of the natural world.
"As the old mother sways her to and fro singing her husky song" (Whitman). Whitman uses a metaphor referring "Old mother" to mother nature but also uses personification (our earth cant swing nor sway). He is trying to make a point stating that we take advantage of the relationship we have with the only planet that supports us. In the hands of mankind, we desperately fail to take care of our eco-system. We are constantly destroying nature and our earth with the harmful acts of human activities.
"As I watch the bright stars shining" (Whitman). Another point where creating an image for the readers mind is important, Whitman is trying to make a point here saying that there is more to this word that lays beyond the stars above that only a humans eyes can witness.
"As I think a thought of the clef of the universe and of the future" (Whitman). This is meant to be a metaphor for life.
In the first stanza Whitman creates a reasonable view of how modern day humanity views and reacts to the world and nature. In the second stanza he reveals the realism of the world
On the Beach at Night Alone
by: Walt Whitman

Analysis of stanza 2
"A vast similitude interlocks all, All spheres, grown, ungrown, small, large, suns, moons, planets, All distances of place however wide, All distances of time all inanimate forms" (Whitman). The repetitive use of "all" is meant to show the internal connection of everything on earth and in the universe.
"All souls, all living bodies though they be ever so different, or in different worlds, All gaseous, watery, vegetable, mineral processes, the fishes, the brutes" (Whitman). Whitman is just using various examples to portray that we are all the same internally regardless of the outside.
"All nations, colors, barbarisms, civilizations, languages, All identities that have existed, or may exist, on this globe, or any globe, All lives and deaths, all of the past, present, future" (Whitman). Here Whitman is just saying no matter what the same things are bound to repeat themselves regardless.
"This vast similitude spans them, and always has spann'd, And shall ever span them and compactly hold and enclose them" (Whitman). Whitman uses repetition of the word "Span" to show that all together the universe, nature and mankind share a bond of equality
Walt Whitman uses the powerful connection of the universe, mankind and nature through a parallel structure to portray that we are all helplessly dependent and entirely connected.
Stanza One
On the beach at night alone,
As the old mother sways her to and fro, singing in her husky song,
As I watch the bright stars shining, I think a thought of the clef of the universes, and of the future.
Full transcript