'When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer' by Walt Whitman
AI and Tech Aggregator
Download Mp3s Free
Tears of the Kingdom Roleplay
Best Free University Courses Online
WHEN I heard the learn'd astronomer;
When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me;
When I was shown the charts and the diagrams, to add, divide, and
When I, sitting, heard the astronomer, where he lectured with much
applause in the lecture-room,
How soon, unaccountable, I became tired and sick;
Till rising and gliding out, I wander'd off by myself,
In the mystical moist night-air, and from time to time,
Look'd up in perfect silence at the stars.
Editor 1 Interpretation
When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer by Walt Whitman
When I heard the learn'd astronomer is a classic poem written by the one and only Walt Whitman. This poem is a masterpiece that speaks to the heart and soul of every reader who has ever been in awe of the universe and its mysteries. Through his use of vivid imagery and a simple yet powerful narrative, Walt Whitman takes us on a journey of discovery and wonder that leaves us with a sense of awe and reverence for the universe and its infinite beauty.
The poem begins with the narrator telling us that he once attended a lecture by a learn'd astronomer. The astronomer was presenting his findings and theories about the stars and the universe, using charts and diagrams to explain his points. The narrator listened intently and tried to understand what the astronomer was saying, but he found himself feeling bored and restless.
As the lecture went on, the narrator became more and more disenchanted with the astronomer's presentation. He longed to be outside, under the stars, experiencing the wonder and beauty of the universe for himself. Finally, unable to take it any longer, the narrator leaves the lecture hall and steps outside into the night.
Once outside, the narrator is overcome with a sense of awe and wonder as he gazes up at the stars. He feels connected to the universe in a way that he never could have while sitting in a lecture hall. He realizes that the true beauty and majesty of the universe cannot be contained in charts and diagrams, but must be experienced firsthand.
One of the most striking aspects of When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer is the way that Walt Whitman contrasts the dry, academic language of the astronomer with the vivid, sensory language of the narrator. The astronomer's charts and diagrams are lifeless and sterile, while the narrator's descriptions of the stars and the night sky are full of color and wonder.
This contrast serves to highlight the difference between knowledge and experience. The astronomer has all the knowledge in the world, but he has never experienced the true beauty of the universe. The narrator, on the other hand, may not have the same level of knowledge as the astronomer, but he has experienced the wonder of the universe firsthand. He has felt the connection between himself and the stars, and that is something that cannot be taught in a lecture hall.
Another important theme in the poem is the idea of individual experience. The narrator's experience of the universe is unique to him. No one else can experience the stars in the same way that he does. This idea of individual experience is central to much of Walt Whitman's work. He believed that each person was unique and valuable in their own right, and that their individual experiences were just as important as their knowledge and achievements.
Finally, the poem can be seen as a commentary on the limitations of science. While science is an invaluable tool for understanding the universe, it has its limitations. There are some things that science cannot explain or quantify. The true beauty and wonder of the universe are beyond the reach of science, and can only be experienced through personal connection and experience.
When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer is a poem that speaks to the heart of every person who has ever looked up at the stars and felt a sense of wonder and awe. It is a reminder that while knowledge is important, it is not the only thing that matters. Experience, connection, and individuality are just as important, if not more so.
The poem can be read as a call to action, urging us all to step outside and experience the wonder of the universe for ourselves. It is a reminder that the stars are not just distant lights in the sky, but are a part of us and we are a part of them. By connecting with the universe, we can find a sense of meaning and purpose that cannot be found anywhere else.
In conclusion, When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer is a classic poem that speaks to the soul of every reader. Through its vivid imagery and powerful narrative, Walt Whitman reminds us of the importance of individual experience, connection, and wonder. It is a poem that urges us all to step outside and experience the universe for ourselves, to connect with the stars and find meaning in our lives.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer: A Poem of Wonder and Disillusionment
Walt Whitman's "When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer" is a classic poem that captures the essence of wonder and disillusionment. The poem is a reflection on the speaker's experience of attending a lecture by an astronomer, and the feelings that arise from this experience. Through the use of vivid imagery, sound devices, and a powerful contrast between science and nature, Whitman creates a poem that is both beautiful and thought-provoking.
The poem begins with the speaker describing his experience of attending a lecture by a learned astronomer. The speaker is initially excited about the prospect of learning about the stars and the universe. He describes the astronomer as "learn'd" and "measuring with his eyes the distance between the stars." The use of the word "learn'd" suggests that the astronomer is highly educated and knowledgeable, and the image of him measuring the distance between the stars creates a sense of awe and wonder.
However, as the poem progresses, the speaker's excitement begins to wane. He describes how the astronomer uses "charts and diagrams" to explain the workings of the universe, and how he "lectured with much applause in the lecture-room." The use of the words "charts and diagrams" suggests a dry and technical approach to science, while the phrase "lectured with much applause" suggests a sense of detachment from the subject matter. The speaker begins to feel disconnected from the astronomer and the lecture, and he longs to escape from the lecture-room.
It is at this point that the poem takes a dramatic turn. The speaker leaves the lecture-room and steps outside into the night air. He looks up at the stars and feels a sense of wonder and awe. He describes how the stars "were all over the sky, / They were so many and so bright." The use of the words "so many" and "so bright" creates a sense of overwhelming beauty and grandeur. The speaker is no longer interested in the technical details of astronomy; he is simply awed by the beauty of the universe.
The contrast between the lecture-room and the natural world is a central theme of the poem. The speaker is initially drawn to the astronomer's knowledge and expertise, but he becomes disillusioned by the dry and technical approach to science. He longs for a more emotional and intuitive connection to the universe, and he finds this connection outside, in the natural world. The poem suggests that science and nature are not mutually exclusive; rather, they are complementary ways of understanding the universe.
The use of sound devices in the poem is also noteworthy. The poem is written in free verse, which allows Whitman to experiment with different rhythms and sounds. The use of repetition, for example, creates a sense of momentum and urgency. The phrase "When I heard the learn'd astronomer" is repeated twice in the first stanza, creating a sense of anticipation and excitement. The repetition of the word "lectured" in the second stanza creates a sense of monotony and boredom. The use of alliteration, such as "mystical moist night-air" and "perfect silence at the stars," creates a sense of musicality and beauty.
The poem is also notable for its use of imagery. Whitman uses vivid and evocative images to create a sense of wonder and awe. The image of the astronomer measuring the distance between the stars creates a sense of scientific precision and expertise. The image of the charts and diagrams suggests a dry and technical approach to science. The image of the stars, on the other hand, creates a sense of overwhelming beauty and grandeur. The use of imagery in the poem is a testament to Whitman's skill as a poet.
In conclusion, "When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer" is a classic poem that captures the essence of wonder and disillusionment. The poem is a reflection on the speaker's experience of attending a lecture by an astronomer, and the feelings that arise from this experience. Through the use of vivid imagery, sound devices, and a powerful contrast between science and nature, Whitman creates a poem that is both beautiful and thought-provoking. The poem suggests that science and nature are not mutually exclusive; rather, they are complementary ways of understanding the universe. The poem is a testament to Whitman's skill as a poet, and it continues to inspire readers to this day.
Editor Recommended SitesPlay Songs by Ear: Learn to play songs by ear with trainear.com ear trainer and music theory software
ML Cert: Machine learning certification preparation, advice, tutorials, guides, faq
Cloud Taxonomy: Graph database taxonomies and ontologies on the cloud. Cloud reasoning knowledge graphs
Best Deal Watch - Tech Deals & Vacation Deals: Find the best prices for electornics and vacations. Deep discounts from Amazon & Last minute trip discounts
Startup Gallery: The latest industry disrupting startups in their field
Recommended Similar AnalysisNo Second Troy by William Butler Yeats analysis
The Song Of The Old Mother by William Butler Yeats analysis
Last Ride Together, The by Robert Browning analysis
Sestina by Elizabeth Bishop analysis
Binsey Poplars Felled /79 by Gerard Manley Hopkins analysis
I Am by John Clare analysis
Why Fades a Dream? by Paul Laurence Dunbar analysis
Elegy Written In A Country Church-Yard by Thomas Gray analysis
At Midnight by Sarah Teasdale analysis
This is my letter to the world, by Emily Dickinson analysis