Lama Al-saleh Mrs. Rossi ENG 1DI A18 December 2017 “O Captain! My Captain!” By Walt WhitmanWalt Whitman was an American poet, essayist, and journalist. “Walt Whitman was born on May 31, 1819 in West Hills, New York.
” “He is Considered one of America’s most influential poets” “Walt Whitman Biography.com.” poets.org. A Television Networks, 27 Jun.
2017. Web. 22 Dec. 2017.
. “In 1855 he self-published the anthology Leaves of Grass, the book is now a milestone in American literature, even though at the time of its publication it was considered highly debatable.” Whitman wrote this poem; “O captain! My Captain!” shortly after President Abraham Lincoln was killed.The poem “O Captain! My Captain!” By Walt Whitman is an emotional poem that renders a crew member speaking to his departed captain. In this lyrical poem many poetic devices were used such as symbolism, imagery, repetition, and allusion, these techniques enable the reader to comprehend the poet’s feelings and emotions.
It is clearly shown that this poem is an extended metaphor intended to preserve the memory of Lincoln’s life and hard work.The theme of this poem; with every good comes bad, is conveyed through the symbolism and extended metaphor used in the poem. The title of the poem; “O captain, my captain”, captain is a symbol for Abraham Lincoln. The poem commences with a joyful start, because the captain had led them to victory.
Though, events quickly turned as the poet is astound to see his captain lifeless and that his captain has “fallen cold and dead” ( 8,16,24). The poem opens by honouring that “our fearful trip is done” (1). The “fearful trip” represents the journey through which the captain has led his people. It is a symbol for the Civil War. Just before Lincoln died he helped the United States to end the civil war.
Furthermore, the shift and attitude in this poem play a big role, in understanding the message of the poem. The tone of this poem is mostly sorrowful for the loss of their captain, however happy for the end of “our fearful trip”(1). The poet shifts in attitude from cheerful in lines (1-4) to mournful in lines (5-8). The shift is that in the beginning of the poem the poet is in denial and doesn’t want to believe that the captain is actually dead. After the shift occurs the poet realizes and accepts the fact that his captain is dead .In conclusion, This emotional lyrical poem “O Captain! My Captain!” by Walt Whitman is a poem that everyone, who lost a loved one can relate to. This poem is a meaningful poem that teaches you with every good comes bad. Through the techniques: symbolism, extended metaphor, shift, and attitude the poet conveys his message effectively to the reader, and puts the reader in the poets’ position.
Work cited Examples of Symbolism in “O Captain! My Captain!” (n.d.). Retrieved from http://classroom.synonym.
com/examples-symbolism-o-captain-captain-21433.htmlOlayemi, L. (2015, November 18). O Captain ! My Captain ! Retrieved from https://prezi.
com/mukpmdkdkur-/o-captain-my-captain/TPCASTT of O captain, My captain. (n.d.).
Retrieved from https://poetryprojectsammani.weebly.com/tpcastt-of-o-captain-my-captain.htmlWalt Whitman.
(2017, April 28). Retrieved from https://www.biography.com/people/walt-whitman-9530126Whitman, W.
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). Walt Whitman: Poems “O Captain! My Captain!” Summary and Analysis. Retrieved from http://www.gradesaver.com/walt-whitman-poems/study-guide/summary-o-captain-my-captain