Famous Life Poem

Walt Whitman was an American poet who lived from 1819-1892. Some of his poetry was controversial because of the nature of its content, but he is believed to be the father of free verse (but he did not invent this form of poetry). He is also seen as a "poet of democracy" because he wrote so strongly about the American character. In this poem, Whitman shows how America is made up of a variety of people. It's the stories of those people who make America the strong and unique nation that it is.

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I Hear America Singing

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I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear,
Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be blithe and strong,
The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam,
The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or leaves off work,
The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat, the deckhand singing on the steamboat deck,
The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench, the hatter singing as he stands,
The wood-cutter's song, the ploughboy's on his way in the morning, or at noon intermission or at sundown,
The delicious singing of the mother, or of the young wife at work, or of the girl sewing or washing,
Each singing what belongs to him or her and to none else,
The day what belongs to the day - at night the party of young fellows, robust, friendly,
Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.

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