Walt Whitman: The Bible in Poetry

Walt Whitman is regarded as one of America’s most significant nineteenth-century poets. Whitman references the Bible in several of his works. Evident in an early work, “Shirval: A Tale of Jerusalem,” is Luke 7:11–16, the account of Jesus raising the widow’s dead son. In an 1892 essay entitled, “The Bible as Poetry,” Whitman wrote, “How many ages and generations have brooded and wept and agonized over this book.

What untellable joys and ecstasies—what support to martyrs at the stake—from it. . . . To what myriads has it been the shore and rock of safety—the refuge from driving tempest and wreck!Translated in all languages, how it has united this diverse world.”

Share

More Book Minute Features

October 14, 2019

Eisenhower's Inaugural Verses

President Dwight Eisenhower was born on this day in 1890. Shortly before his first inauguration in 1953, the president-elect asked Billy Graham to sug...
October 07, 2019

Fanny Crosby: Prolific Blind Hymn Writer

Fanny Crosby, though blind from a very young age, became a prolific hymn writer. Fanny Crosby was 15 when she was enrolled at the newly founded New Y...
September 30, 2019

Lincoln and the Gettysburg Address

The Battle of Gettysburg in July, 1863, was an attack by Confederate troops on the North — on their own soil! General Lee’s plan was to win, thereby d...