Posts Tagged: Walt Whitman


David Biespiel’s Poetry Wire: Something’s Happening Out There


The big crowd stretched form the gold-domed State House to Park Street. I had the urgent feeling that we were part of something. That we counted. ...more


David Biespiel’s Poetry Wire: The Dugout


So much of politics is symbolic speech in the service of the syncopations of the lives we actually live. But the ways we gather to vote is with our bodies. It’s the dance that goes along with those rhythms. ...more

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The Rumpus Interview with Campbell McGrath


Campbell McGrath talks about his new collection, XX: Poems For The Twentieth Century, capitalism, history, and what it might mean to write a wordless poem. ...more


David Biespiel’s Poetry Wire: Defeat


It never occurred to me to try to write poems without the guidance of other poets and poems. ...more

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The Rumpus Interview with J. Aaron Sanders


J. Aaron Sanders discusses his debut novel, Speakers of the Dead, his writing process, and the wisdom of sharing his early drafts with his students. ...more

Sarah Palin, the Transcendentalist


From Lincoln’s famous love of quoting Shakespeare to George Bush’s prodigious reading habits, American politics have always mingled with the literary pantheon. Now that Sarah Palin is back in the news for her endorsement of Donald Trump, Jeet Heer traces her literary roots to Walt Whitman:

This is democratic verse, that tries to encompass the world in a bear hug.



The Amazing Disappearing Woman Writer


To refuse to disappear at mid-life—I am forty-two as of the writing of this essay—is perhaps the best rebellion a woman poet can make to the literary world and to the world at large. ...more

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The Rumpus Late Nite Poetry Show #13: Rick Barot


In Episode 13 of The Rumpus Late Nite Poetry Show, Rick Barot discusses his newest collection, Chord, tone in poetry, and the selfies Bishop might've posted. ...more


Remarks On Walking Around in Boston


As you walk, you become intensely aware in two directions. There is the outer world, and there is your head space. It is not necessary or possible really to keep strict focus on one or the other. They blend together. ...more

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David Biespiel’s Poetry Wire: Cornerstones of American Poetry


The only way I can put it is, no American poet I have ever met regardless of disposition or poetics has disliked Frank Stanford’s poems. ...more

How Curious You Are To Me, Bill Murray


On Monday, Bill Murray led a parade of poets across the Brooklyn Bridge in honor of Walt Whitman’s 1856 poem “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry” at the 20th annual Poets House Brooklyn Bridge Poetry Walk. At the end of the walk, the poets recite the nine-stanza poem:

Crowds of men and women attired in the usual costumes, how curious you are to me!


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The Saturday Rumpus Essay: O Martyr My Martyr!


In most communities, teachers are compensated so poorly and afforded so little respect that in many cases the primary compensation is martyrdom. ...more

Charles Simic on Walt Whitman


Poet Charles Simic may prefer the “pleasant aftertaste” of a literary amuse-bouche before bed, but when prompted about one of his favorite literary passages, he chose Walt Whitman’s “A Sight in Camp in the Daybreak Gray and Dim.” Over at the Atlantic, Simic explains why the poem moves him through the context of his experiences growing up in Belgrade during WWII:

I’m not a person who gets teary-eyed reading poetry—other people’s poetry, or my own.


The Ancient Art of the Book Blurb


Book blurbs—and the controversies surrounding them—go back as far as Thomas More, who gathered a bouquet of them for Utopia.

Ben Jonson blurbed Shakespeare. Ralph Waldo Emerson blurbed Walt Whitman. But do they really mean anything anymore?

Click through to find out—and read historical blurbs and blurb satires like this one:



David Biespiel’s Poetry Wire: A Poet and a President


A funny thing happened on the way to President Obama’s second inauguration Monday. The president’s speech and Richard Blanco’s poem got reversed.

Broadly speaking, one’s expectations of political rhetoric is that, at its worst, it reduces complex argument to slogans and platitudes or, at its best, that it singles out constituencies and individual citizens in order to focus on the day-to-day concerns that society can address.