From Walt Whitman’s essays: “Sea-Shore Fancies”

Walt Whitman transformed his life experiences and observations into poetry, that is imaginative, eloquent, exquisite and powerful.

Here is an excerpt  from Walt Whitman’s essay: “Sea-Shore Fancies”, about an imaginary picture, that “shaped and color’d” his life and his writings:

“There is a dream, a picture, that for years at intervals, (sometimes quite long ones, but surely again, in time,) has come noiselessly up before me, and I really believe, fiction as it is, has enter’d largely into my practical life—certainly into my writings, and shaped and color’d them. It is nothing more or less than a stretch of interminable white-brown sand, hard and smooth and broad, with the ocean perpetually, grandly, rolling in upon it, with slow-measured sweep,with rustle and hiss and foam, and many a thump as of low bass drums. This scene, this picture, I say, has risen before me at times for years. Sometimes I wake at night and can hear and see it plainly.”

from  “Complete prose works. Specimen days and Collect, November boughs and Good bye my fancy”
by Walt Whitman, 1819-1892. Publication date: 1910. (1891: earlier publications in a series of volumes).

The essays in this collection are autobiographical and are about the many different aspects of his life:  A few examples: he wrote about his  work as a journalist and printer, and as a wound-dresser in the Civil War.  There are also essays about his youth, and his poetry, including prefaces to the poem “Leaves of Grass”;  he wrote  detailed observations of nature and about his emotional and sensory responses to nature.

*Works by this author published before January 1, 1923 are in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.

Sources for the prose and poems of Walt Whitman:

Project Gutenberg Ebook # 8813: “Complete Prose Works: Specimen Days and Collect, November Boughs and Goodbye My Fancy” by Walt Whitman, 1819-1892. publication date 1910. (1891: earlier publications; also published in a series of volumes).

The Project Gutenberg EBook 8388
Poems By Walt Whitman, by Walt Whitman
(selected by W. M. Rossetti.) 1868.

For a biography of Walt Whitman, and his poems, see: