Updated February 28, 2017 | Infoplease Staff. It has been credited as "representing the core of Whitman's poetic vision." Life, in its complexities, as well as mundane acts, continues on its survival plan, just like leaves of grass. This is the grass that grows wherever the land is and the water is, This the common air that bathes the globe. The section of “Song of Myself” that stands out to me in particular is the sixth section where Whitman discusses grass. Grass is the key to the secrets of man's relationship with the Divine. In Whitman’s poetry, symbolism and sermons are used to present important subjects. The nature and significance of grass unfold the themes of death and immortality, for grass is symbolic of the ongoing cycle of life present in nature, which assures each man of his immortality. Grass in “Song of Myself”. Children, in romantic poetry, often embody a sort of pre-fall innocence, so in that sense there is some precedent to taking such an inquiry seriously. Song of Myself Section 6 by Walt Whitman: Summary and Analysis By the sixth section, Whitman has established the setting, mood, and tone, and has also introduced the basic themes of the poem. Grass strives to survive daily and eventually meets its end. Right off the bat, in this section of “Leaves of Grass”, Whitman alludes to the fact that we come from the dust of the earth. Whitman describes a child coming to him and asking him what is the grass. For a century and a half, readers believed that this absence of … The man in the poem is “…observing a spear of summer grass.” This causes him to ponder the human condition and the thoughts and actions of human beings. His explanation, he admits, is incomplete. fetching it to me with full - The Academy of American Poets is the largest membership-based nonprofit organization fostering an appreciation for contemporary poetry and supporting American poets. This is definitely alluded to here, regardless of one’s belief system. He makes several guesses as to what grass might be or represent. Walt Whitman: Song of Myself, Part 17. What is the meaning of section 1 in the poem "Song of Myself"? Within this section Whitman tries to grasp “What is the grass?” spawning from a child’s question. "Song of Myself" is a poem by Walt Whitman (1819–1892) that is included in his work Leaves of Grass. Whitman notes “… the song of me rising from bed and meeting the sun.” This is what spears of grass do each morning – awake and meet the sun. I like how you approach this famous passage by noting how cool it is that he spends time answering the question of a child. Nature is an emblem of God, for God's eternal presence in it is evident everywhere. In "Song of Myself", what is the speaker's fifth answer as to what the grass is, to which he currently believes? Whitman talks of all that one can worry about. Already a member? Walt Whitman’s Song of Myself is a poem which attempts to liberate both the poet and reader from the restraints of convention by thoroughly exploring and emphasizing transcendentalist beliefs of a common soul or spiritual state, known only in an individual’s intuition, which encompasses and goes beyond the materialistic and physical world. An analysis of the most important parts of the poem Song of Myself by Walt Whitman, written in an easy-to-understand format. The most important and memorable moment of Walt Whitman’s “Song of Myself” is portrayed in section “6”, when a child with his hands full of grass asked the question: “What is the grass?” This question institutes the central symbol of the poem and the response to this question lifts the veil on the meaning of the entire poem: human society, the cycle of growth and death and principally the … This passage also seems to be religious in ways by focusing on death and referencing the Lord. In Whitman’s poetry, symbolism and sermons are used to present important subjects. Grass is also a metaphor for democracy: one blade of grass is weak, but united with many others, becomes stronger and more significant. By the time Whitman had shaped Leaves of Grass into its final structure in 1881, he left the poem (its lines now grouped into 52 sections) in a lead position, preceded only by the epigraph-like cluster "Inscriptions" and the programmatic "Starting from Paumanok." Grass is one of a number of plants described by Whitman in this poem. Whitman is satisfied with what he sees of himself – internally and physically. What is known I strip away…I launch all men and women forward with me into the unknown. The words " per- © 2021 Walt Whitman in American and Beyond. The little one sleeps in its cradle, I lift the gauze and look a long time, and silently brush away flies. fetching it to me with full. Whitman uses the grass as a metaphor to imply that all people are connected. People must face life differently than unthinking grass and deal with issues. In Song of Myself, Walt Whitman uses grass as a recurring motif that evokes several ideas: ease, nature, nation, universality, death, cyclicality,.... See full answer below. In section #44 of, "Song of Myself," Whitman's first stanza begins: "It's time to explain myself…let us stand up. Subscribe to our e-mail newsletter to receive updates. He is satisfied and says so, “I am satisfied – I see, dance, laugh, sing.…”. https://www.sparknotes.com/poetry/whitman/themes/. Log in here. While “Song of Myself” is crammed with significant detail, there are three key episodes that must be examined. It is a representation of this grass, as well as distinct and separate (as an individual blade) from this multitude. What is the meaning of section 52 in "Song of Myself" by Whitman? It seems that Whitman is relating the life of a blade of grass to a human life. Title: The title of the book in which "Song of Myself" appears, Leaves of Grass, is a pun on the meaning of "leaves" as the green things on plants, and also as the pages of a book. eNotes.com will help you with any book or any question. What are some themes and symbols in "Song of Myself," with specific details? The grass is itself a child, always emerging anew from the realm of death into a new life; it is a kind of coded writing that seems to speak equality since it grows among the … Grass, so-to-speak, greets each day and exists and functions. It has been credited as "representing the core of Whitman's poetic vision." Office Hours: m/w, 12-2 & by apt. 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