rla on March 27th, 2023


“Twenty-eight young men bathe by the shore” while a twenty-eight-year-old rich woman gazes at their naked bodies splashing in the water, then goes out to caress them, in her vivid imagination.

rla on March 27th, 2023

The episodes are found at http://momentsunderlamplight.co.uk/2023/03/26/evening-under-lamplight-podcasts-series-1-dantes-inferno/

rla on March 27th, 2023

The episodes are found at http://momentsunderlamplight.co.uk/2023/03/26/evening-under-lamplight-podcasts-series-10-walt-whitmans-song-of-myself/

§1 Series 10 will take us through the 52 sections (some short, some long) of Walt Whitman’s epic poem “Song of Myself”. In this first, short section, Whitman introduces the two main characters, I and you, who come together at a deep level to do nothing more than “loafe” and observe.

§2 The second section of “Song of Myself” takes us from “Houses and rooms […] full of perfumes” through a series of excited contacts “undisguised and naked” to a conclusion in which we are invited to see all things for ourselves, not through the eyes of others.

§3 “Urge and urge and urge, / Always the procreant urge of the world” – another rush of energy as Whitman celebrates himself and the vibrant world within and without.

§4 A lively drama between the self caught up in the “pulling and hauling” and the other self, the “Me myself” that stays “apart from the pulling and hauling”, “both in and out of the game”.

§5 “You settled your head athwart my hips and gently turned over upon me” – but this is not the usual erotic encounter, as we watch the triple selves come into unity and rise to the heights.

§6 Whitman’s meditation on the child’s question “What is the grass?”

§7 “Who need be afraid of the merge? / Undrape” – thus Whitman invites us to open up and allow him to merge with us, and us to merge with everyone else. How do we respond?

§8 Whitman contemplates the stages of life, and goes out into the streets to hear “the blab of the pave”, the “living and buried speech … always vibrating here”. Come share this with him.

§9 Whitman on the farm, playful, observant, merging.

§10 Whitman enters into American life in the wilds, as a hunter, a sailor, a clamdigger, a witness at a tribal wedding, an Abolitionist protecting a runaway slave.