Analysis Of Walt Whitman 's ' The Captain ' My Captain ! '

922 Words Feb 4th, 2016 4 Pages
O Captain! My Captain! was a poem Walt Whitman wrote in 1865. The poem is all about the mourning of President Abraham Lincoln, whom Whitman deeply admired. The “captain” represents Lincoln, the “fearful trip” represents the Civil War, the “ship” represents the nation during the war and the “object won” represents the salvaged union. In the poem itself, the speaker finds it hard to be happy after a voyage during the death of his captain and though he tries to join the group celebrating, he sets his emotional thoughts on the captain instead. Walt Whitman’s stylistic choices contribute to the poem’s style, meaning and impact in three ways: It contributes to the style by honoring a deceased person while not mentioning their name or work, it contributes to its meaning by using metaphors that could only be understood during the year the poem was written and it contributes to its impact by reaching out to others throughout the shattered nation and made him famous. The first reason Whitman’s stylistic choices contribute to the poem’s style, meaning and impact is that it contributes its style by honoring a deceased person while not mentioning their name or work. Whitman did well at honoring Lincoln and his work without making it obvious to the readers. It also shows how much Whitman admires Lincoln by expressing his emotion during Lincoln’s assassination and how much he means to him. Finally, Whitman wrote the poem using an AABBCDED rhyme scheme which he usually would never do when…
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