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Civil War Poetry and Prose

4.05  ·  Rating Details ·  201 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Walt Whitman experienced the agonies of the Civil War firsthand, working, in his forties, as a dedicated volunteer throughout the conflict in Washington's overcrowded, understaffed military hospitals. This superb selection of his poems, letters, and prose from the war years, filled with the sights and sounds of war and its ugly aftermath, express a vast and powerful range ...more
Paperback, 96 pages
Published October 4th 1995 by Dover Publications (first published 1872)
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Ayne Ray
Nov 17, 2008 Ayne Ray rated it really liked it
Whitman experienced the Civil War in several ways, including serving as a volunteer hospital aide in Washington, touring battlefields, and searching for his brother, George, reported to be wounded in action. The impact of the war on the author was profound, and this collection of writings illustrates the horror, loneliness, and anguish of warfare as seen through the eyes of one of our greatest poets.
Jan 12, 2013 Julie rated it really liked it
Whitman's poetry style is not a favorite of mine, but you can not discount his passion. And, even if poetry's not your bag and you're not a Whitman fan, I bet you can't read the tribute poems to Abraham Lincoln without a hankie in your hand. But, aside from the Civil War poetry here, the second section of this little book is comprised of Whitman's journal entries and letters he wrote during the war. These are first-hand accounts of the war, stories from the make-shift hospitals and the recountin ...more
Jackson Cyril
Dec 13, 2016 Jackson Cyril rated it really liked it
A stark contrast to the Whitman of "Song of myself"; here he is sad, pensive and rather weary of life. The war has touched him deeply; but I venture to say that his poetic ability has not suffered. His work here can very easily rank among his best.
Jul 24, 2009 Jake rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
I haven't gotten through this cover to cover, but have sampled quite a bit. I've also listened to song adaptations of several of these poems.

As one professor portrayed to me in college, Walt Whitman came out of the Civil War a changed man. As one of the great eye-witnesses of the event, Whitman was moved him to write poems both stirring and haunting to commemorate the war and its victims. If you’ve only read “O Captain! My Captain!”, I recommend exploring further. Some of it strikes me as mostly
Feb 04, 2007 Rosie rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: poets, whitman fans, history buffs
Although it contained graphic descriptions of the battlefield, wounds, and so on-- I found this book much more enjoyable to read than Bierce's. It felt much more real. This was partly due to the fact that it was written partially in a journal format (which is one of my favorite formats to read). His words are heartfelt, honest, and blunt.
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Walter Whitman was an American poet, essayist, journalist, and humanist. He was a part of the transition between Transcendentalism and realism, incorporating both views in his works. Whitman is among the most influential poets in the American canon, often called the father of free verse.

Born on Long Island, Whitman worked as a journalist, a teacher, a government clerk, and a volunteer nurse during
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