WALT WHITMAN

This essay has a total of 427 words and 3 pages.

WALT WHITMAN




Some years ago, when a few copies of a volume called Leaves of Grass found their way into this country from America, the general verdict of those who had an opportunity of examining the book was that much of it was indescribably filthy, most of it mere incoherent rhapsody, none of it what could be termed poetry in any sense of the word, and that, unless at the hands of some enterprising Holywell Street publisher, it had no chance of the honour of an English reprint.
Besides, it would be idle to deny that Walt Whitman has many attractions for minds of a certain class. He is loud, swaggering, and self-assertive, and so gets credit for strength with those who worship nothing that is not strong. He is utterly lawless, and in consequence passes for being a great original genius. His produce is unlike anything else that has ever appeared in literature, and that is enough for those who are always on the look-out for novelty. He is rich in all those qualities of haziness, incoherence, and obscurity which seem to be the first that some readers nowadays look for in poetry. But, above all, he runs amuck with conventionalities and decencies of every sort, which naturally endears him to those silly people

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