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Leaves of Grass: The First (1855) Edition
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Leaves of Grass: The First (1855) Edition

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4.12  ·  Rating details ·  70,074 Ratings  ·  1,969 Reviews
A deluxe edition of Whitman's crowning achievement, with an introductory essay by Harold Bloom

I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.
When Walt Whitman self-published his Leaves of Grass in July 1855, he altered the course of literary history. One of the greatest masterpieces of America
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Paperback, 160 pages
Published June 28th 2005 by Penguin Classics (first published 1855)
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Maggie I would say that this book of poetry would be too advanced for a person learning English. You asked this question 10 months ago so perhaps you've…moreI would say that this book of poetry would be too advanced for a person learning English. You asked this question 10 months ago so perhaps you've advanced in your English studies.

However, if you want to learn a wide range of new vocabulary, you could definitely give this book a good try. Just make sure to have a dictionary close by! Good luck! (less)

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Selby
Sep 11, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Whitman used to right fake reviews under false names for Leaves of Grass and send them to publishers, newspapers, and periodicals. I love that about him. So over the top. He had love for everything. Especially himself. As for the quality of the work the words speak for themselves:
"This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not co
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Lizzy
In Leaves of Grass Walt Whitman sings nature and his symbiosis with America, he sings the universe and his awareness of it all, but above all he sings the people and their quest for individuality and immortality. ‘The proof of a poet is that his country absorbs him as affectionately as he has absorbed it.’ And here he includes himself with all his mysticism and spiritual illuminations. In that, it is a celebration of humanity, his country and everything in it. Some parts of his poems were so bea ...more
Dan
Jan 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alright, my rating here is very misleading. I haven't read Leaves Of Grass. I don't even intend to read Leaves Of Grass. Not all the way through any way. It seems sort of weird to just read a big fat collection of poetry all the way through. The five star rating is for one poem, "Song of the Open Road".

I've never really appreciated poetry. I've liked song lyrics and that's poetry, but it seemed like I needed a tune to go with it. I've liked scripture which can be pretty poetic, but it seemed I n
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Michael
Jul 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Whitman sings the song of America like no other poet I know--the outsized joy and pain, the affinity for common folk and the love of nature and the sheer overwhelming feeling of every sight and sound and industrious noise around him. "I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear," he wrote. Because of this some are tempted to see Whitman as a poet of pure exuberance--like a proto-hippie or, worse, like a garrulous Hallmark card. But Whitman doesn't shy away from pain at all--he embraces it l ...more
Lauren Schumacher
Aug 05, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
When Leaves of Grass was first published, critics applauded Whitman "only that he did not burn" the "mass of stupid filth" immediately upon completion. They primarily objected to its sensual and occasionally (rather overtly) homoerotic content. Nowadays, of course, it seems entirely too mild to raise an objection on those grounds, but man, oh man, I understand the impulse to want to turn this book into kindling.


It's less like THIS...


...and more like THIS.

This weighty poetic tome has all the we
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Roy Lotz
It is becoming increasingly trendy to chalk up success to practice and hard work. We have the famous 10,000 hours from Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers, and a similar theme from Joshua Foer’s Moonwalking with Einstein, just to name two examples. But it seems to me that some people were just born to do what they did, that no amount of practice could ever have produced something so fresh, original, new, and revolutionary.

Take Montaigne. He invented a new genre (the essay), pioneered a free and easy pro
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Ben Wilson
Nov 27, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: democrats, republicans, flag-shitters
Recommended to Ben by: President Clinton gave this as a present to Monica Lewinsky
Shelves: neverfinished
Leaves of Grass is like reading every single instant message that I and a friend of mine ever wrote to one another over the course of the last ten years. Likely way too long, too self-serving and would have shocked the general public if they cared to read it when it was written. But nestled in there are some real, true brilliant moments.

This is after all Whitman's life work, laid bare and un-edited for the most part. What else are we to expect? He is literally singing a song of himself, which he
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Teresa Proença
"Adeus, minha Fantasia!
Adeus, querida companheira, minha amada!
Vou, mas não sei para onde vou,
Nem qual será a minha sorte, nem se alguma vez nos voltaremos a ver,
Por isso, adeus, minha Fantasia!

Agora, a minha última vontade — deixa-me olhar para trás por um instante;
Cada vez mais lento e leve o tiquetaque do relógio dentro de mim,
Retirada, anoitecer, e em breve a surda palpitação que pára.

Convivemos, alegrámo-nos e consolámo-nos durante muito tempo;
Foi magnífico! — Agora separamo-nos — Adeus, mi
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Collin
Apr 12, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gave-up-on
Holy shit this is self-important and tedious.

--update: This has sat untouched on my desk all year. I can think of a hundred books I'd rather start than finish this, so I doubt I'll pick it back up unless I run out of books to read, I'm too poor to buy any more books, all my friends turn on me and refuse to loan me anything else, and all the nearby libraries are set on fire simultaneously.
Samadrita
There's only so much rhetoric on American imperialism I can ingest and assimilate at a stretch. Later, Mr Whitman.

(paused at 47%)
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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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More about Walt Whitman...
“Resist much, obey little.” 5366 likes
“Not I, nor anyone else can travel that road for you.
You must travel it by yourself.
It is not far. It is within reach.
Perhaps you have been on it since you were born, and did not know.
Perhaps it is everywhere - on water and land.”
1461 likes
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