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In 1855, Walt Whitman published, at his own expense, the first edition of Leaves of Grass, a visionary volume of 12 poems. Showing the influence of a uniquely American form of mysticism known as Transcendentalism, the writing is distinguished by an explosively innovative free-verse style and previously unmentionable subject matter.
Exalting nature, celebrating the human body, and praising the senses and sexual love, this monumental work, now a classic of American poetry, was condemned as immoral upon publication.
Included in this edition are some of the greatest poems of modern times, works that continue to upset conventional notions of beauty and originality even today.
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I first read Walt Whitman nearly fifty years ago; his optimism has fueled mine ever since.
Now, I hear Edoardo Ballerini nearly sing the poet’s verse. Glorious!
I shall listen again and again.
8 people found this helpful
- Brian Thurm
Fluid and Full of Life
Splendid delivery from the narrator to make the poetry of Whitman breathe into life. It’s eloquent and yet easy to absorb. Once I fall into the narrators flow, I had some fantastic imprints and insights from the visuals that Whitman’s writing transcends.
4 people found this helpful
- J. S.
The entire collection holds such wealth of beauty, wisdom, and insight. To have been written so long ago, the power of these words has not dwindled. While there are a few lulls in the reverie, the preface and Song of Myself are alone tantamount contributions to poetry. First, the best summation of what Poetry's purpose is and what it is supposed to be, and then the finest example of a poem you could ever imagine. Whitman was an original.