In Whitman's Hand


About this Item

Title: Poem of the Universalities

Creator: Walt Whitman

Date: Between 1850 and 1860

Whitman Archive ID: med.00735

Source: The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, Notebooks and Unpublished Prose Manuscripts, ed. Edward F. Grier (New York: New York University Press, 1984), 4:1322. Grier based his text on Notes and Fragments, ed. Richard Maurice Bucke (London, Ontario: A. Talbot & Co., printers, 1899), 142. The location of this manuscript is unknown. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of manuscripts, see our statement of editorial policy.

Editorial note: The last two phrases of this manuscript appeared in "Poem of Joys" in the 1860 edition of Leaves of Grass. Because the manuscript has not been located it is difficult to speculate on the circumstances or date of its composition, but it was probably written between 1850 and 1860.

Contributors to digital file: Janel Cayer, Jeannette Schollaert, Kevin McMullen, Nicole Gray, Brett Barney, and Kenneth M. Price

Poem of the Universalities. Poem of the Universal likenesses of all men—humanity. Though the times, climes, differ, men do not so much differ. There is a universal language. What is heroic is universal among men. Love is universal among [men?]. Liberty is—justice is—the hatred of meanness is—etc.

Poem of the Longings of Friendship. Pictures of Friendship—the hankering for friends—the memory of only a look—the boy lingering and waiting.


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