“I see Christ once more”


“I see Christ once more eating the bread of his last supper, in the midst of youths and old persons, ”

— Walt Whitman, “Salut au Monde!,” Leaves of Grass (1856 edition)


How — by what miracle of human inspiration and creativity — does the self-educated poet Walt Whitman make the old and familiar seem fresh and new, as if we were encountering and hearing about it anew, or perhaps for the first time?

(Hint: It’s because he created everything anew, relying on no preexisting models or poetic tropes.)

Such simplicity and, therefore, freshness.


— Roger W. Smith

   December 2017

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