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Crossing Brooklyn Ferry

Crossing Brooklyn Ferry

by Walt Whitman

Section 11 Summary

Get out the microscope, because we’re going through this poem line-by-line.

Lines 57-58

What is it, then, between us?
What is the count of the scores or hundreds of years between us?

  • These lines might be our favorite in the entire poem. He asks, "What is it, then, between us?"
  • You could imagine that he already has an answer in his head – "not much" – or you could imagine he asks the question seriously, as if he were surprised that there could still be something keeping us apart despite his time-traveling powers.
  • In line 59, he moves closer to the implicit answer that time can't really separate people.

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