113 Introduction Text to President Lincoln Burial Hymn

Ticket for Whitman's lecture on the death of President Lincoln

Ticket for Whitman’s lecture on the death of President Lincoln

O’ Captain, My Captain and When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d are two out of the four Walt Whitman text that became “President Lincoln’s Burial Hymn”. The other two text were Hush’d be the Camps To-day and This Dust Was Once the Man. The free verse poem When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d was titled such because when Walt Whitman heard about Abraham Lincoln’s death he was looking out the door at his mother’s house to the lilacs in the yard. The piece was written and published in Drum-Taps and Sequel to Drum-Taps. Later, it was republished with the other poems to make the burial hymn.

O’Captain, My Captain, an elegy for Lincoln, is seen as the most popular piece written by Walt Whitman. It has a distinct rhyme scene of AABCDEFE, GGHIJEKE,  LLMNOEPE, and two alliterations. Walt Whitman was identified so often by this poem, which vastly differed from the rest of his work, later in life he stated he almost sorry he ever wrote it. Although it never mentions Lincoln’s name you can see the ties between his life and the end of the civil war.

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Introduction Text to President Lincoln Burial Hymn by Timothy Robbins is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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