#PoetryMonth – Story Time Friday with Walt Whitman

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I’ve asked my friend Walt Whitman onto the blog today to help finish off Poetry Month.

…ok, I’m not friends with Whitman. And no, I didn’t ask him to be on the blog. But maybe he would like to be on the blog if he were still alive today. Who knows. Either way, this is the last Story Time Friday for the 2016 National Poetry Month celebration here on A Life Among the Pages. I wanted to wind things down with a poem I’ve been holding onto since March when I read it at our open mic night here in Colorado. I debated starting the month off with the poem instead, but it felt better to hold off. It’s a good send-off poem and hopefully inspiration for people who’ve newly discovered the craft to work at it and come back for 2017’s Poetry Month.

There’s a lot to take in from this poem, as with all of Whitman’s work. I hope you read it over a few times, at the very least. If you’d like to start a discussion in the comments about it, that’d be great too. It’s fun to talk about Whitman.

And if this wasn’t enough of “the father of modern poetry” (as some call him) for you, you’ll find a link below to download his entire collection, Leaves of Grass, from Project Gutenberg. It’s along read, but it’s worth it, even if only in small chunks here and there.

Thanks for sticking with me for 29 days so far! It’s been a long but rewarding journey. Don’t forget to stop by tomorrow, too. It’s the last day of Poetry Month and you don’t want to miss it!
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Poets to Come

by Walt Whitman

Poets to come! orators, singers, musicians to come!
Not to-day is to justify me, and answer what I am for;
But you, a new brood, native, athletic, continental, greater than before known,
Arouse! Arouse—for you must justify me—you must answer.

I myself but write one or two indicative words for the future,
I but advance a moment, only to wheel and hurry back in the darkness.

I am a man who, sauntering along, without fully stopping, turns a casual look upon you, and then averts his face,
Leaving it to you to prove and define it,
Expecting the main things from you.

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Download Leaves of Grass from Project Gutenberg

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