Manual Chicago Poems

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‘Chicago and December’ by W. S. Di Piero

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  2. Sandburg’s Chicago Poems
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The Chicago that the speaker personifies is burly and tough. Then, in longer lines, the speaker describes the life of the city. A mysterious "they" tells the speaker that Chicago is "wicked," "crooked," and "brutal," and the speaker agrees with all of these judgments. He has seen prostitutes, killers, and starving families. But the speaker responds to this "they" and pronounces Chicago is "so proud to be alive and coarse and strong and cunning. The speaker then describes Chicago again in a series of short lines.

Chicago is constantly "building, breaking, rebuilding.

Sandburg’s Chicago Poems

Certainly, there is no argument that, at least in his early poetry, Sandburg is openly political he was a Socialist. To do so is, in and of itself, a political act. As Van Wienan argues:. This political act whether conscious or not by Lowell and her peers is a manifestation of the dynamics of class-consciousness surrounding poetry during the Modernist period.

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That Lowell is seemingly unaware of her hypocrisy concerning Sandburg and his politics is further evidence of the inscription of both literary and social marginalization endured by Sandburg, as well as much of society. He stands aside and shows the results of living in a fallen world.

In the collection, imagist and political poems appear side by side and, as Van Wienen notes, Sandburg. As a result, as John T. Sandburg shares more similarities than might initially be thought with several populist writers who have not been treated well critically.

Chicago Poems

He can be viewed, perhaps, as a type of pre-Beat writer. Like Bukowski, as well as many of the Beat writers, Sandburg focuses on blue collar, urban themes, emphasizing colloquial language in a simple narrative style. It can be argued that Bukowski has become one of the most original American poets, serving as the voice for an entire generation of disaffected Americans.

Sandburg, however, is the original Voice of the People and is, indeed, one of the most uniquely American poets of our time. Unlike so many of his more critically acclaimed contemporaries who have remained apart from the people as members of the privileged, culturally-elite academy, Sandburg is one of us.

Moreover, Sandburg is all of us, the American people, the unnamed, faceless mass, and Sandburg is our own. Cain, Jimmie. Corrington, John William.

It Catches my Heart in its Hand. By Charles Bukowski.

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New Orleans: Loujon, Frederick, John T. Lowell, Amy.


Tendencies in Modern American Poetry. New York: Octagon, Oktenberg, Adrian. Marie Harris and Kathleen Aguero.

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Athens: U of Georgia P, Rubin, Louis D. Sandburg, Carl. The Complete Poems of Carl Sandburg. Harriet Monroe , a fellow resident of Chicago, had recently founded the magazine Poetry at around this time. Monroe liked and encouraged Sandburg's plain-speaking free verse style, strongly reminiscent of Walt Whitman. Sandburg sent his manuscript to Alfred Harcourt , then a junior-ranking editor at Henry Holt.