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Poetry Review – Walt Whitman – The Sleepers Verse 1


Whitman disturbingly pictures himself not just dreaming but travelling the astral planes and moving voyeuristically into the dreams of other sleepers around the World. He sees them sleep, as well as seeing and interacting in their dreams. He seems like a precursor to Freddy Kruger though more benevolent in intent.

He gets into the heads of new born infants, both husband and wife as they sleep entwined n one another’s arms, sleeping sisters, wounded soldiers unconscious on battlefields and even the dreams of the dead.

Whitman joins in with the mind’s couplings between homosexuals and reads into the thoughts of condemned prisoners during their final fitful pre-execution sleep. He offers comfort and kind thoughts but his tone is rather creepy and intrusive.

Whitman is both dream and dreamer, both lovers as they love each other and the love between them. Whitman sees only God as greater than himself, dreaming him in his creation, as he is drawn quickly from dream to dream, dreamer to dreamer as the long night progresses.

Weird, surreal egotism running rampant.

Arthur Chappell

Image Credit » Photo Whitman & Shakespeare taken by me.

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Maplewinter wrote on January 27, 2015, 7:25 AM

I am going to have to search him out as it sounds like his works would be really interesting for me.

maxeen wrote on January 27, 2015, 8:31 AM

How creepy, wonder how he came to those thoughts.

CountryWine wrote on January 27, 2015, 2:24 PM

I love his work! I remember learning about him during my high school curriculum.

BodieMor wrote on January 31, 2015, 1:14 AM

I found this review as poetic as the subject!