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Walt Whitman

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by

Ellie Feng

on 13 November 2015

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Transcript of Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman
Background Information
Born May 31, 1819
Died March 26, 1892
Careers
Teacher
Journalist
Editor
Poet
O Captain! My Captain!
O Captain! my Captain! our fearful trip is
done
,
The ship has weather'd every rack, the prize we sought is
won
,
The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting,
While follow eyes the steady keel,
the vessel grim and daring
;
5 But O heart! heart! heart!
O the bleeding drops of
red
,
Where on the deck my Captain lies,
Fallen cold and
dead
.

O Captain! my Captain! rise up and hear the bells;
10 Rise up--for you the flag is flung--for you the bugle
trills
,
For you bouquets and ribbon'd wreaths--for you the shores a-crowding,
For you they call, the swaying mass, their eager faces turning;
Here Captain! dear father!
This arm beneath your
head
!
15 It is some dream that on the deck,
You've fallen cold and
dead
.

My Captain does not answer, his lips are pale and
still
,
My father does not feel my arm, he has no pulse nor
will
,
The ship is anchor'd safe and sound, its voyage closed and
done
,
20 From fearful trip the victor ship comes in with object
won
;
Exult O shores, and ring O bells!
But I with mournful
tread
,
Walk the deck my Captain lies,
Fallen cold and
dead
.
A
A



B

B



C



B

B


C
C
A
A


B

B
Personification
Alliteration
14
10
8
6
6
8
6
Notes:
Whitman uses iambic pentameter: unstressed stressed, in this poem


"
The ship has weather'd every rack, the prize we

sought is won, "

and in many other lines with meter to create rhythm.



The Poem's Style:

Walt Whitman uses
alliteration
,
personification
, iamb,
meter
, rhyme,
somber/melancholy words
and stanzas to organize his poem and bring it to life and produce a sense of gloom.
14
14
14
8
6
Whispers of heavenly death murmur'd I
hear
,
Labial gossip of night, sibilant chorals,
Footsteps gently ascending, mystical breezes wafted soft and low,
Ripples of unseen rivers, tides of a current flowing, forever flowing,
5 (Or is it the plashing of tears? the measureless waters of human
tears
?)

I see, just see skyward, great cloud-masses,
Mournfully slowly they roll, silently swelling and mixing,
With at times a half-dimm'd sadden'd far-off star,
Appearing and disappearing.

10 (Some parturition rather, some solemn immortal birth;
On the frontiers to eyes impenetrable,
Some soul is passing over.)

Whispers of Heavenly Death
Imagery
Personification
Alliteration
A



A
Notes:



He wrote this poem in 1885, 7 years before his death in 1892. Because of how close he was to dying, his feelings were incorporated into this poem.


The Poem's Style:

Walt Whitman used stanzas to separate his poems into sections
He used diction. Words such as "whispers", "gossip", and "chorals" create a feeling where the poem is speaking to the reader.
He uses
imagery
to set the scene of the poem and allows the readers to envision peaceful process of death
And who art thou? said I to the soft-falling shower,
Which, strange to tell, gave me an answer, as here translated:
I am the Poem of Earth, said the voice of the rain,
Eternal I rise impalpable out of the land and the bottomless sea,
5 Upward to heaven, whence, vaguely form'd, altogether changed, and
yet the same,
I descend to lave the drouths, atomies, dust-layers of the globe,
And all that in them without me were seeds only, latent, unborn;
And forever, by day and night, I give back life to my own origin,
10 and make pure and beautify it;
(For song, issuing from its birth-place, after fulfilment, wandering,
Reck'd or unreck'd, duly with love returns.)

The Voice of the Rain
Personification
Metaphor
The Poem's Style:

This poem is written in free verse, with no rhyme scheme, meter, or any sort of structure.

This poem was meant to be a conversation between the poet and the falling raindrops.

The last lines are in parentheses to allow the reader to distinguish between his words and the rain's words.


I have heard what the talkers were talking, the talk of the
beginning and the end,
But I do not talk of the beginning or the end.
60 There was never any more inception than there is now,
Nor any more youth or age than there is now,
And will never be any more perfection than there is now,
Nor any more heaven or hell than there is now.
Urge and urge and urge,
65 Always the procreant urge of the world.
Out of the dimness opposite equals advance, always
substance and increase,
Always a knit of identity, always distinction, always a breed
of life.
70 To elaborate is no avail, learn'd and unlearn'd feel that it is so.
Sure as the most certain sure, plumb in the uprights, well
entretied, braced in the beams,
Stout as a horse, affectionate, haughty, electrical,
I and this mystery here we stand.
75 Clear and sweet is my soul, and clear and sweet is all that is
not my soul.
Lack one lacks both, and the unseen is proved by the seen,
Till that becomes unseen and receives proof in its turn.
Song of Myself Excerpt
Repetition
Oxymoron
Simile
Simile
Notes:

"Song of Myself" is perhaps one of Walt Whitman's most famous poems.

There are 52 stanzas, averaging 15 lines per stanza.

In other parts of this poem, there appears to be rhyme
The Poem's Style:

Whitman uses
similes
, to compare himself and other objects to each other.

He uses
oxymorons
or contradicting statements to show a little of his conflicted personality.
By Ellie Feng
LeMaster
Period 3, ELA

Splendor of ended day floating and filling me,
Hour prophetic, hour resuming the
past
,
A
Inflating my throat, you divine average,
You earth and life till the last ray gleams I
sing
.
B

5 Open mouth of my soul uttering gladness,
Eyes of my soul seeing perfection,
Natural life of me faithfully praising
things
,
B
Corroborating forever the triumph of
things
.
B

Illustrious every one!
10 Illustrious what we name space, sphere of unnumber'd spirits,
Illustrious the mystery of motion in all beings, even the tiniest insect,
Illustrious the attribute of speech, the senses, the body,
Illustrious the passing light--illustrious the pale reflection on
the new moon in the western sky,
Illustrious whatever I see or hear or touch, to the
last
.
A

Good in all,
In the satisfaction and aplomb of animals,
In the annual return of the seasons,
In the hilarity of youth,
In the strength and flush of manhood,
In the grandeur and exquisiteness of old age,
In the superb vistas of death.

Song at Sunset
Personification
Repetition
Repetition
Notes:

Walt Whitman wrote many poems about nature, which were compiled into his book, Leaves of Grass.

Sunsets were a popular topic for him.
The Poem's Style:

Walt Whitman uses
personification
,
rhyme scene
, and words of praise in his poem, "Song at Sunset".

He gives his soul human-like actions to describe how vivid the sunset truly was. He expressed joy, amazement, and awe by comparing natural life to perfection and triumph.

He repeatedly emphasized his words by using
repetition
and starting off most of the lines with the same word.
Full transcript