Looking for a book, DVD, CD, or other item? Search our catalog!

Friday, July 01, 2016

Poetry Friday--Walt Whitman's Advice

No, Walt Whitman wasn't America's first "Dear Abby," but within his work you'll find some good advice as is summarized in "7 Things Walt Whitman Said Everyone MUST Do To Live A Vibrant, Rewarding Life." You'll notice that this doesn't say, "7 Things Everyone Must Do to be a Success." Whitman's advice is simple and straight forward: be kind, be true, and don't care about amassing personal wealth.

If you prefer to ferret out the advice yourself, we have Whitman's work in Complete Poetry and Collected Prose [811.3 WHI].

Here's a short Whitman poem that reveals the feeling of possibility that he had for this country:
I Dream’d in a Dream

I dream’d in a dream
I saw a city invincible to the attacks of the
whole of the rest of the earth,
I dream’d that was the new city of Friends,
Nothing was greater there
than the quality of robust love, it led the rest,
It was seen every hour in the actions of the men of that city,
And in all their looks and words.

To discover more about the man, view the PBS "American Experience" episode, Walt Whitman [DVD B WHI] or read any of the numerous biographies we have in our adult and children's collections [B WHI or J B WHI].

Tabatha Yeatts: The Opposite of Indifference will be hosting this week's Poetry Friday Round-Up, stop by before you head off for the beach!

13 comments:

  1. Ah yes, WW and his butterfly! My older daughter did her high school senior project on Whitman, and I think she used that photo on the cover. I like Walt's dream. It seems like he really lived his advice.

    ReplyDelete
  2. "I dream'd in a dream / I saw . . ." this could be a writing stem (prompt) for students. I often give one to jump start their free writing. Ran across this interesting teaching resource about Walt Whitman. Thought you might like looking at it: http://www.nj.gov/dep/parksandforests/historic/whitman/docs/america.pdf

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the link, Alice!

      Delete
  3. Great advice from Whitman. He still rings true today.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Since we never seem to learn from our mistakes, I can guarantee his words will be relevant 100 years from now.

      Delete
  4. Good old Walt. He's an American revolutionary in the purest sense, and good old Emerson for making sure we got to hear him. I think there still are some around, but their voices tend to get drowned out these days.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The gentle people are definitely at a disadvantage in our loudest-longest society.

      Delete
  5. I absolutely love this poem! It is my first time reading it. It captures the sentiment of founding fathers perfectly. I did not know he wrote advice on the having a vibrant reading life. I am going to check out the link. Thanks for sharing this wonderful poem and link.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love this poem, Thanks for sharing it today :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you liked it, Sally!

      Delete
  7. Great poem. He had a good way of looking at life. I wonder if he'd worry about putting his kids through college and building a 401K for retirement. I doubt it. :-)

    ReplyDelete