Song of Myself
Section 47 Summary
Get out the microscope, because we’re going through this poem line-by-line.
- In this section Whitman is starts to sound like Obi-Wan Kenobi or some other sage master here.
- He's a teacher, but in order to prove his strength, you have to exceed him and even destroy him.
- He talks about a boy who becomes a man by not taking the path of "conformity or fear." He isn't afraid to get his hands dirty, get sunburned, or even get injured. Whitman doesn't like pampered people.
- Even though he thinks you need to find your own path, he's still going to follow you around.
- He doesn't say things just to earn money or to fill up time. He speaks in the voice of nature and honest work.
- Once again he praises people who work outdoors and with their hands: farmers, woodsmen, mechanics, mothers, etc.
- Whitman speaks to them and they continue doing what they were doing before.