Title: It seems to me
Creator: Walt Whitman
Date: Between 1847 and 1855
Whitman Archive ID: duk.00302
Source: Trent Collection of Whitmaniana, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University. Transcribed from digital images of the original. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the manuscripts, see our statement of editorial policy.
Editorial note: Edward Grier dates this manuscript to between 1847 and 1855 (Notebooks and Unpublished Prose Manuscripts [New York: New York University Press, 1984], 1:157). Whitman's admonition here to avoid similes and ornament in poetry is possibly related to passages in the prose preface to the 1855 edition of Leaves of Grass, which express similar sentiments. The manuscript has been pasted to a backing sheet along with three other manuscript scraps, most likely by a collector or archivist.
Contributors to digital file: Robert LaCosse, Kirsten Clawson, Janel Cayer, Kevin McMullen, Nicole Gray, Kenneth M. Price, and Brett Barney
It seems to me—to avoid all poetical similes—to be faithful to the perfect likelihoods of nature—healthy, exact simple, disdaining ornament.