When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer

By Walt Whitman 1819–1892 Walt Whitman
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 diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them,
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.

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Poet Walt Whitman 1819–1892

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

Subjects Nature, Arts & Sciences, Sciences, Living, Disappointment & Failure, Stars, Planets, Heavens

 Walt  Whitman

Biography

Walt Whitman is America’s world poet—a latter-day successor to Homer, Virgil, Dante, and Shakespeare. In Leaves of Grass (1855), he celebrated democracy, nature, love, and friendship. This monumental work chanted praises to the body as well as to the soul, and found beauty and reassurance even in death.

Along with Emily Dickinson, Whitman is regarded as one of America’s most significant nineteenth century poets. Born on Long . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Nature, Arts & Sciences, Sciences, Living, Disappointment & Failure, Stars, Planets, Heavens

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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