Poetry Research Paper Literature consists of Essay

Poetry Essay, Research Paper

Literature consists of many classs. The short narrative, the novel, and the verse form are illustrations of these classs. Literature is more frequently so non a agency of expounding for a cardinal point, or subject, through symbolism. Poetry is the agreement of these symbols and carefully metered linguistic communication to convey a point. Many poets use their poesy as non merely a agency of conveying a subject, but besides as a manner of researching their psyches. Walt Whitman is one of these poets. Whitman has many subjects in his plants, and among them are self-revelation and the true ego.

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Self-revelation is the hunt for true ego through poesy. Through complex images and symbols, like the coloring material Grey stand foring masturbation and at the same clip Whitman himself ( Burke, p.35, ) or a span stand foring the hereafter ( Martin, p. 284, ) Whitman searches his psyche for the true ego. Whitman s true ego, as he described it, was the rock outcrop of my ain emotional and personal nature an effort to set a individual, a human being freely, to the full, and genuinely on record ( Martin, p.283. ) In other words, Whitman attempted to happen himself in sometimes-undecipherable poesy. See the undermentioned quotation mark from Song of Myself:

Afar down I see the immense first Nothing, I know I was even at that place,

I waited unobserved and ever, and slept through the unenrgetic mist,

And took my clip, and took no injury from the fetid C

Long I was hugg d near long and long.


This quotation mark non merely shows Whitman s deep linguistic communication, but besides presents several of his other subjects and oft-used symbolisms. Nothing and negativeness are frequently used by Whitman to demo the beauty and peace of fast-approaching decease ( Burke, p.42. ) In fact, Whitman s poesy follows general tendencies harmonizing to his wellness and age ; his more vernal, healthier poesy could be equated to the lumberman of trees, the woodcutter. His older, sicker poesy could be equated to the fallen tree, the timber ( Burke, P. 26-27. ) One could, hence, about conclude that in his poetic credence of beautiful, peaceable decease, Whitman indulges in confidence ; that in his pity with the fallen trees, he finds consolation for his ailing wellness.

Whitman besides uses images with homosexual intensions in his poesy. The lines Long I was hugg d near long and long, Hugging and loving bedfellow, and I love him, but I do non cognize him, all hold homosexual niceties typical of Whitman. Even Whitman s ideal of democracy is defined as Love of male for male, ( Burke, P. 33. ) Furthermore, says Kenneth Burke:

When we turn to the organic structure politic, we note how the concretizing of the democratic codification about automatically vows Whitman to imagery of a homosexual dramatis personae. ( p. 35 )

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In this statement Burke says that if Whitman s ideal of democracy is love between male and male, so the concretizing of this love would, logically, be homosexual Acts of the Apostless.


Another of Whitman s subjects used in the quotation mark on page 2 is the kingdom of pregnancy. In that quotation mark Whitman symbolizes peaceable, fast-approaching decease in void, but besides symbolizes a kind of return to the uterus ;

I waited unobserved and ever, and slept through the unenrgetic mist,

And took my clip, and took no injury from the fetid C

Waiting symbolizes the foetus during gestation. Slept of all time through the unenrgetic mist could besides typify the foetus, within the embryo

nic pouch, surrounded by a thick liquid. And took my clip, could typify a long and backbreaking journey, possibly like that of the foetus. And took no injury from the fetid C, could typify the protection of a female parent s uterus. He even uses a term, fetid that sounds like foetus. Overall, he merges birth and decease into the all-ness of the female parent. The subjects of Mother and Homosexuality, excessively, are combined and play-on-words are used on occasion in Whitman s works to organize impersonal, androgynous imagination ( Burke, P. 42. ) This hermaphroditism is frequently used to proclaim Whitman s ideal of democracy.

One of Whitman s other prevailing subjects is Unified Diversity, the theory of the single s singularity of individuality. In the fist page of this paper Whitman s hunt for the true ego was discussed ; this is his composing on the true ego. Whitman idealised individualism as persons immersed in a whole. Herein besides lies some of his indulging consolation ; although the person is extant, the whole is everlasting, which ties into another of Whitman s subjects, ageless transition. The person is frequently expressed as an entity


in footings of the whole ; frequently achieved through analogies between the single s organic structure and the World s organic structure. An person may be said to be wild and wild like a implosion therapy river, which shows that the person, in comparing to non merely the remainder of society, but the universe, is boisterous. Whitman used similar analogies to seek to set his psyche, his really being into words. He besides expressed his innermost psyche through invented phrases and words ; some illustrations are love-juice, illimitable liquid jets of love, and life-lumps ( Burke, P. 35. )

Another interesting subject in Whitman s works is that democracy is good, for it is ensnarled in a few other subjects that The good Grey poet held affectionately. If democracy is, so, good, so one must see Whitman s ideal of democracy ; love between male and male. Whitman, hence, quantifies ( and in some ways justifies ) his ain homosexual inclinations in the ambiguous fa fruit drink, Democracy Is Good, for who is to state that democracy is bad? Once once more, one falls onto his indulgence in self-solace, for he creates a manner to do the public unwittingly accept and encompass his homosexual inclinations in accepting his support of democratic positions. See the undermentioned quotation mark, from Whitman himself:

I have non derive d the credence of my ain clip.

In this quotation mark Whitman summates the personal and cultural conditions to which he owed the necessity of his self-searching ( Martin, P. 283. ) In other words, he tells us outright that he would non be accepted if he told the people of his true nature, and so feels impelled to show himself through ambivalent poetic footings and symbolism.


As a concluding point, there is some just sum of symbolism in the rubrics chosen for Whitman s volumes, and single verse form themselves ( Which, in its ego is true to the Whitman subject of persons in integrity ; there is parallel between Whitman s rubrics of verse forms, persons, and volumes, wholes. ) The most thought provoking of Whitman s Symbolic rubrics is Leafs of Grass, for the term leaves has many deductions. It can intend go forthing or deceasing, pages of a book, and even persons. It is in the foliages stand foring persons that Whitman s Theme of subjects, -unified diversity- is employed ; Leafs of Grass, leaves being persons, grass being the group, is a analogical signifier ( see page 4, 1, line 7 ) of Whitman s great subject of subjects.