March 26, 2017 is the 125th anniversary of Walt Whitman's death. I found out, recently, that he actually isn't dead at all. He just stopped somewhere, waiting for us. We need him again.
EXHIBIT A: PRETTY GIRL WITH GOOD TASTE IN POETRY
This is my daughter The Spare. She's more photogenic than me. We went into Camden today to a special reading at his tomb. And he was there. He gave us a few verses of his work. I think he would have said more, but it was a bitter cold day for the end of March. Death does not seem to have fazed him at all, which should be a solace to all of us.
EXHIBIT B: YOU THOUGHT I WAS NUTS, RIGHT?
Some people took videos of the event -- alas, I forgot my phone (I used Spare's to take this photo). Perhaps in a few days someone will upload a video so that you can all see the great, gray poet speaking to us.
In the meantime, here's a little bit:
Love the earth and sun and animals,
Despise riches, give alms to everyone who asks,
Stand up for the stupid and crazy,
Devote your income and labor to others,
And your very flesh shall be a great poem.
This week I will be teaching my students about Walt Whitman. They only know him as a bridge.