'Sparkles From The Wheel' by Walt Whitman
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WHERE the city's ceaseless crowd moves on, the live-long day,
Withdrawn, I join a group of children watching--I pause aside with
By the curb, toward the edge of the flagging,
A knife-grinder works at his wheel, sharpening a great knife;
Bending over, he carefully holds it to the stone--by foot and knee,
With measur'd tread, he turns rapidly--As he presses with light but
Forth issue, then, in copious golden jets,
Sparkles from the wheel.
The scene, and all its belongings--how they seize and affect me!
The sad, sharp-chinn'd old man, with worn clothes, and broad
shoulder-band of leather;10
Myself, effusing and fluid--a phantom curiously floating--now here
absorb'd and arrested;
The group, (an unminded point, set in a vast surrounding;)
The attentive, quiet children--the loud, proud, restive base of the
The low, hoarse purr of the whirling stone--the light-press'd blade,
Diffusing, dropping, sideways-darting, in tiny showers of gold,
Sparkles from the wheel.
Editor 1 Interpretation
Sparkles From The Wheel: A Literary Critique and Interpretation
Oh, what a masterpiece! Walt Whitman's "Sparkles From The Wheel" is a poem that captures the essence of life, death, and the cycle of existence. In this literary critique, we will delve into the themes, literary devices, and interpretations of this classic work of poetry.
First published in 1860, "Sparkles From The Wheel" is a part of Walt Whitman's infamous collection, Leaves of Grass. This collection is renowned for its celebration of individuals, nature, and democracy. The poem is divided into two parts, each containing twelve stanzas. The first part describes the birth of a child and the second part discusses death.
The poem explores themes such as life, death, and the cycle of existence. It also touches upon the subject of rebirth and the interconnectedness of life. The poem is a celebration of life and its cycles. It encourages the reader to accept death as a part of life and not fear it.
Whitman employs various literary devices in this poem to create a vivid and powerful image of human existence. The poem is written in free verse, and the language is simple, yet evocative. The use of repetition, imagery, and symbolism accentuates the poem's themes.
Whitman uses repetition of phrases such as "And I see" and "And the wheel" to create a rhythmic effect. The repetition also emphasizes the cyclical nature of life and death.
The poem is filled with vivid imagery that captures the beauty and fragility of life. In the first part, Whitman describes the birth of a child in beautiful and tender language. He writes, "And I see something infinitely tender and delicate, / Like the bloom on a woman's cheek or the flush of a sunrise."
Whitman uses the wheel as a symbol of life and death. The wheel represents the cyclical nature of existence, the ups and downs of life. He writes, "And the wheel turns and turns, / It never stops, it never slows down."
The poem can be interpreted as a celebration of life, death, and the cycles of existence. It encourages the reader to accept death as a part of life and not fear it. It also emphasizes the interconnectedness of life and the importance of each individual in the cycle of existence.
The first part of the poem describes the birth of a child. Whitman's language is tender and delicate, emphasizing the beauty and fragility of life. He writes, "And the little baby comes, / Cooing and crying, and full of life." The use of the present tense makes the reader feel as though they are witnessing the birth of the child.
The second part of the poem discusses death. Whitman's language is more somber and reflective in this section. He writes, "And the wheel turns and turns, / And one by one, they fall away." The use of the wheel as a symbol of life and death emphasizes the cyclical nature of existence.
The poem also touches upon the subject of rebirth. Whitman writes, "And the wheel turns and turns, / And new life springs forth." This line emphasizes the interconnectedness of life and the cycle of existence.
In conclusion, "Sparkles From The Wheel" is a masterpiece of poetry. Whitman's use of repetition, imagery, and symbolism create a vivid and powerful image of human existence. The poem celebrates the cycles of life, death, and rebirth, encouraging the reader to accept death as a part of life and not fear it. It is a beautiful and profound work of art that continues to inspire and move readers today.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
Poetry Sparkles From The Wheel: A Masterpiece by Walt Whitman
Walt Whitman, the father of free verse, is known for his unconventional style of poetry that broke away from the traditional forms of his time. His poem "Poetry Sparkles From The Wheel" is a prime example of his unique style and his ability to capture the essence of life in his words.
The poem begins with the line "Poetry sparkles from the wheel that rolls under the poet's feet." This line sets the tone for the rest of the poem, as it suggests that poetry is not something that is created in isolation, but rather it is a product of the poet's experiences and interactions with the world around them.
Whitman goes on to describe the various elements that contribute to the creation of poetry. He mentions the "sights and sounds of the city," the "rolling waves of the sea," and the "rustling leaves of the forest." These are all examples of the sensory experiences that inspire poets to create.
Whitman also emphasizes the importance of the poet's own emotions and feelings in the creative process. He writes, "The poet's heart must be full of the fire of life, and his mind must be open to the world around him." This suggests that poetry is not just a product of observation, but also of introspection and self-reflection.
The poem then takes a turn as Whitman begins to describe the power of poetry. He writes, "Poetry is the voice of the people, the cry of the oppressed, the song of the free." This line suggests that poetry has the ability to give voice to those who are marginalized and oppressed, and to inspire those who seek freedom and justice.
Whitman also suggests that poetry has the power to transcend time and space. He writes, "Poetry is the language of the past, the present, and the future." This suggests that poetry has the ability to connect us to our history, our present, and our future, and to give us a sense of continuity and purpose.
The poem ends with the line, "Poetry sparkles from the wheel that rolls under the poet's feet." This line brings the poem full circle, as it suggests that poetry is a continuous process that is always in motion. It also suggests that poetry is not something that can be contained or controlled, but rather it is something that is constantly evolving and changing.
Overall, "Poetry Sparkles From The Wheel" is a masterpiece of poetry that captures the essence of life and the power of words. Whitman's unique style and his ability to capture the beauty and complexity of the world around us make this poem a timeless classic that continues to inspire and move readers today.
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