Walt Whitman, an American poet was one of the most significant writers of his time period. His poetry influenced many poets after him and is also considered "the father of free verse" Although the time period that Walt Whitman was writing in was a time period of transition from Transcendentalism and Realism, Whitman expressed both Realism and Transcendentalism in his work. Realism is accepting situations the way they are and preparing to deal with the outcome of them, realism is specific information and details. Writes that are realists often write about history and their past life experiences. On the other hand, transcendentalism is the idea that spiritual reality and knowledge transcends scientific reality and knowledge.
The poem "Crossing the Brooklyn Ferry" is a strong example of how Walt Whitman expresses Realism and Transcendentalism in his work. The following quotation from likes 23-27 demonstrates an example of realism in the poem:
"Just as you feel when you look on the river and sky, so I felt,
Just as any of you is one of a living crowd, I was one of a crowd,
Just as you are refreshed by the gladness of the river and the bright flow, I was refreshed,
Just as you stand and lean on the rail, yet hurry with the swift current, I stood yet was hurried,
Just as you look on the numberless masts of ships and the thick-stemmed pipes of steamboats,
These lines show realism because Walt Whitman uses imagery with natural and unnatural elements put the reader into his life and the way he felt as he was on the ferry. Another quotation from lines 60-63 expresses realism. "I too lived Brooklyn, of ample hills, was mine; I too walk'd the streets of Manhattan Island, and bathed in the waters around it; I too felt the curious abrupt questionings stir within me," This quotation illustrates Whitman's use of Realism because it shows that everything was real, Walt Whitman did walk the streets of Manhattan Island and he di...
Walt Whitman - essays on poetry
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