Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesPoetry · 1 decade ago

how to read this line from Whitman's poem?

"My own Manhattan with spires, and the sparkling and hurrying tides, and the ships,

The varied and ample land, the South and the North in the light, Ohio's shores and flashing Missouri, "

Q: What does he exactly mean by the words: light and: flashing? could they be: in public (for light) and: broken (for flashing)? I know, I am taking this too far... but it is poetry!!

1 Answer

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    I think his poetry was transcendental, so it could mean almost anything.

    From Wikipedia:

    "The California Gold Rush began in 1848 and Saint Louis, Independence, Westport and Saint Joseph became departure points for those heading to California, earning Missouri the nickname "Gateway to the West". Kansas City was incorporated a year later on the banks of the Missouri River."

    So, maybe Missouri was like a neon sign flashing a message telling everyone to head west to strike it rich with gold.

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