Walt Whitman Influence

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There is no question that Walt Whitman had the most significant influence on American literary history. Along with Emily Dickinson, Whitman represented the Romantic literature era of American literature. Whitman is known for his distinctive poetic forms and free verse. Whitman’s most popular work Leaves of Grass influenced many future writers that came after him to follow his writing style. The richness that Leaves of Grass left behind had such a huge impact on American writers of many different backgrounds and cultures. Whitman’s influence can be seen in the works of Ezra Pound, Langston Hughes, and Sharon Olds.
The influence Walt Whitman had on Ezra Pound is found through Pound’s modernist poetic experiments. “At the beginning of Pound’s career, he wrote of Whitman, “I honor him for he prophesied me while I can only recognize him as a forebear of whom I ought to be proud”” (Willard 573). The following work from Pound was a pact he made with Whitman:
“It was you that broke the new wood,
Now is a time for carving.
We have one sap and one root-
Let there be commerce between us” (quoted in Willard 573).
Pound went on to keep that pact with his many works that include The Cantos, The Condolence, and To Whistler, American. Like in the 1855 version of Leaves of Grass, Whitman gave a descriptive image of him in a “working dress and large hat, arms akimbo, standing at his ease,” this is also matched by the descriptive image in Pound’s Pavannes and Divisions (Willard 573). Whitman
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