And since the song is a reminiscence, a function of memory, we can conclude that it owes its appearance to its pastness, not to a fictive present. High and clear I shoot my voice over the waves, Surely you must know who is here, is here, You must know who I am, my love. The world is transparent and the young mind is intuitive. For I, that was a child, my tongues use sleeping, Now I have heard you, Now in a moment I know what I am forI awake, And already a thousand singersa thousand songs, clearer, louder and more sorrowful than yours, A thousand warbling echoes have started to life within me, Never to die. The title itself is a symbol of birth. This return is prompted by the signs, particularly that of death, beyond which he must leap to bring forth his memorial song.
A word then, for I will conquer it, The word final, superior to all, Subtle, sent up—what is it? Copyright © 1989 by Oxford University Press. In contrast with the sun-drenched landscape of the two together, the bird is isolated in a nocturnal landscape that appears to be the site of violence and execution. Sometimes, if i am in a sad mood, i like to read fun, catchy poems because the rhythm contrasts the rhythm i am feeling that day. Close on its wave soothes the wave behind, And again another behind embracing and lapping, every one close, But my love soothes not me, not me. O troubled reflection in the sea! The poet's final words are a unifying gesture, articulated in a single phrase that appears as a continuous flow out of the world of the sea and the preceding action of the poem.
Put down your warmth, great Sun! In fact, Whitman points out the analogy: Into the past-tense narration from the child's perspective, he interjects the present-tense voice of the adult poet: He called on his mate, He poured forth the meanings which I, of all men, know. He is not in a real cradle. But this message is implied rather than stated. Of course, the word is a name, and perhaps one of the most unusual names in our language, since no one who uses or has ever used the language has experienced the reality the name calls forth. O under that moon where she droops almost down into the sea! The word has a magical power for him; he chants it, turns it this way and that, like an amulet, and allows the poem to pass almost entirely into the word.
The problem with this interpretation is that it presupposes a primal time of innocence, a state of mind in which the child experiences his surroundings with an unmediated vision, before cultural impositions or Freud's Civilization and Its Discontents fetter his consciousness and exile him from an unconscious participation in the world. Whichever way I turn, O I think you could give me my mate back again if you only would, For I am almost sure I see her dimly whichever way I look. But it would be a mistake simply to discount the former, to say that Whitman, in introducing temporality, semiosis, and interpretation into his poetry, reduces his individual compositions to mere reiterations of conventional forms and themes. Transfixed, the boy listens in silence to the rhythms of the pounding waves, which once had -- but no longer -- a cradling effect on him, like a mother rocking and cradling her baby in her ocean-uterus. Is that it from your liquid rims and wet sands? A young boy watches a pair of birds nesting on the beach near his home, and marvels at their relationship to one another.
He would spin an enchantment beyond pain and joy, he would become the poetic shaman who authors that reminiscence for us, who magically summons up the experience in us. Nature unveils to the boy the semiotic nature of life, the fact that he lives in a world of interpretations and translations, a world in which meaning and truth and feeling and reality lie hidden or, more precisely, are a fugitive function of their ever-present yet insubstantial representatives. Only the realization of death can lead to emotional and artistic maturity. The first line of the poem — and the title — consists of a metaphor. The male stays near the nest, calling for his lost mate. In the air, in the woods, over fields, Loved! But this is so only in theory; in actuality, the thrust of the poem is toward consolidation, not expansion; its action, retrenchment, not progression. With this just-sustain'd note I announce myself to you, This gentle call is for you my love, for you.
Has the seemingly endless body of water now become an ocean-coffin? Third, and most important for the conclusion of the poem, the song is ineffective. O madly the sea pushes upon the land, With love, with love. This time sequence is as much the essence of the poem as is the growth of the consciousness of the poet. He had also been sending money to his widowed mother and an invalid brother. O madly the sea pushes upon the land, With love, with love. All of the prepositions denote a starting point, a point of departure, and they indicate a multitude of sources for the genesis of the poet.
Perhaps the one I want so much will rise, will rise with some of you. Whereas pure poetry erupts spontaneously from the heart, the boy's interior language derives from an external origin. This is the source of the first poetry placed on DayPoems. This poem was composed with an awareness not only of the spread of his body but with the spread of his body over time. In seeking to improve his poems artistically, Whitman frequently eliminated or toned down passages of crisis, anxiety, and doubt, giving a smoother line to the arc of his own and the nation's development than had in fact been the case. To this extent, this poem approximates the poetic position of process and potentiality Whitman had favored in his earlier poetry, allows him theoretically to point himself and his poetry toward the future. If the poem dramatizes Whitman's renewed dedication to his art after his crisis of faith in the late 1850s, it is a dedication that arises out of the disjunction between desire and history, between the poet's democracy of the imagination and the fact of a disintegrating world.
That is, rather than beginning in words, the poem begins in the intensity of felt life which breaks open like the boiling point of water and carries the words forward. Through this elegy, Walt Whitman presents his attitude towards death through the medium of he-bird. He call'd on his mate, He pour'd forth the meanings which I of all men know. Do not be decoy'd elsewhere, That is the whistle of the wind, it is not my voice, That is the fluttering, the fluttering of the spray, Those are the shadows of leaves. And thenceforward all summer in the sound of the sea, And at night under the full of the moon in calmer weather, Over the hoarse surging of the sea, Or flitting from brier to brier by day, I saw, I heard at intervals the remaining one, the he-bird, The solitary guest from Alabama. The male's cries touch something in the boy, and he seems to be able to translate what the bird is saying.
If the bird projects some of Whitrnan's despairing sense of personal and national loss, the emergent poet represents the renewed dedication to his art through which Whitman attempted to overcome his crisis of faith. Selected Bibliography Poetry Leaves of Grass David McKay, 1891 Good-Bye, My Fancy David McKay, 1891 Leaves of Grass James R. Whitman worked as a printer in New York City until a devastating fire in the printing district demolished the industry. As almost all the elegy has the consolation through the realization that death is final and superior, this poem too has the ending with the poet and the lone bird realizing the final truth of the death. At first he wanted one of us to read it. His loss of identity mystifies him; his loss of self-control wipes away the rest of the world from his focus.
For I that was a child, my tongue' s use sleeping, Now that I have heard you, Now in a moment I know what I am forI awake And already a thousand singersa thousand songs, clearer, louder, more sorrowful than yours, A thousand warbling echoes have started to live within me, Never to die. He draws upon his own experiences with death and this makes his poetry real. The crone is specifically represented as rocking the cradle, a powerful image of how the physical sense of rhythm is learned, nurtured, and encouraged by the mother even before speech is acquired. Its clear, firm, wonderfully exalting notes, filling and expanding away; dwelling like a poised lark up in heaven; have made my very soul tremble. Yes my brother I know, The rest might not, but I have treasur'd every note, For more than once dimly down to the beach gliding, Silent, avoiding the moonbeams, blending myself with the shadows, Recalling now the obscure shapes, the echoes, the sounds and sights after their sorts, The white arms out in the breakers tirelessly tossing, I, with bare feet, a child, the wind wafting my hair, Listen'd long and long.