In Whitman's Hand

Poetry Manuscripts

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leaf 1 recto

[By day the distant]

By day the distant, ? shadowy
        sails, the steamers' pennant
        trails of smoke
Some vast soul, like a planet's,
        bound, arrested, tied,
Watching the distant, shadowy sails,
My sight and senses given to
        to thee—the saline smell —thy ? odor,
They distant shadowy sails—the
        steamers' pennant-trails of
The flying soaring gull hawks and flocks
leaf 1 verso

This manuscript was probably written in October, 1883. The postmarks on the verso are dated October 11 and 12, 1883, and Whitman's visit to Ocean Grove, New Jersey, in September and October of 1883 was the inspiration for the poem.
Editorial note
This manuscript is likely an early draft of "With Husky-Haughty Lips, O Sea!" a poem published first in Harper's Monthly, March 1884.
The manuscript is written on the inside of an envelope opened up. The verso bears the address "Mr. Walt Whitman, Camden, New Jersey."
By Day the Distant Shadowy Sails  |  The Charles E. Feinberg Collection of the Papers of Walt Whitman, Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Whitman Archive ID


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