In Whitman's Hand

Poetry Manuscripts

Table of Contents
Color Key

leaf 1 recto

[Ashes of heroes]

Ashes of heroes, ? soldiers, blended
        with ashes of roses
        & lilacs,
Ashes cerulean blended fused with
         the ashes of gray,
Ashes of pine & palmetto
Ashes of North and South—ashes
        of East & West,
Ashes of seaboard & inland
        ashes of valle prairie,&
        hill & valley rich
A sSacred aroma & powd
        powder‑odor & dust
leaf 1 verso
leaf 2 recto
The Soul of their Ashes
        rising, ?risen
leaf 2 verso

This manuscript was likely composed around 1870-1871, when Whitman was revising and expanding the poem "Hymn of Dead Soldiers," originally published in Drum-Taps (1865), for republication as "Ashes of Soldiers."
Editorial note
This manuscript appears to be draft material for the two linegroups Whitman added in 1871. The added lines, along with the title change, introduce the new imagery of ashes.
Beat! Beat! Drums!  |  The Charles E. Feinberg Collection of the Papers of Walt Whitman, Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Whitman Archive ID


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