Walt Whitman Poetry Analysis

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As Walt Whitman wrote his multiple editions of Leaves of Grass, each edition always had something new, because he would take his experiences and reflect them into his poetry. For example, the first edition that came out in 1855 wasn’t popular, “Walt Whitman’s literary masterpiece, Leaves of Grass, was first self-published in 1855 with less than glowing reviews.” (Woodworth p. 270). Walt Whitman self-published his first edition due to not being able to find a publisher, the book was beautiful with green leather on the front to give the feeling of “laying down in the grass”. The first edition was mainly focused on nature and the solitude that is found within it. In addition, his involvement in the Civil War appears in the later editions, “When the war broke out, he soon found himself working as a wound dresser for the North. These war experiences became the subject of Drum Taps, a series of poems set during the war.” (Woodworth p. 272). His experiences in the Civil War could be read about in the fourth edition published in 1867. The fourth edition mainly focused on the Civil War and Reconstructionism. Furthermore, his background life before publishing has an influence on his writing, “The life familiar to him is the picturesque, free, unconventional life of the people—not the pale, monotonous, artificial life of literary student, aristocrat, or plutocrat. He enters profoundly into all their difficulties, enjoyments, sorrows, and eager aspirations.” (Noel “A Study of Walt
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