Sunday, October 23, 2011

For ABC Wednesday

(Also for Magpie 88 and Sunday Scribblings)

O Mannahatta!
"I was asking for something specific and perfect for my city,
Whereupon lo! upsprang the aboriginal name:
Mannahatta!
Now I see what there is in a name, a word, liquid, sane, unruly,
musical, self-sufficient.
I see that the word of my city is that word from of old,
Because I see that word nested in an island sixteen miles long, solid-founded.
Numberless crowded streets, high growths of iron, slender, strong,
light, splendidly uprising toward clear skies.
The down-town streets, the jobbers' houses of business, the houses
of business of the ship-merchants and money-brokers, the
river-streets.
Immigrants arriving, fifteen or twenty thousand in a week.
The summer air, the bright sun shining, and the sailing clouds aloft.
The winter snows, the sleigh-bells, the broken ice in the river,
passing along up or down with the flood-tide or ebb-tide.
The mechanics of the city, the masters, well-form'd,
beautiful-faced, looking you straight in the eyes.
Trottoirs throng'd, vehicles, Broadway, the women, the shops and shows,
A million people--manners free and superb--open voices—-hospitality.
City of hurried and sparkling waters! City of spires and masts!
City nested in bays! Mannahatta, my city!"
Walt Whitman
(P. S. It's always been my backyard. --Berowne)

47 comments:

JJ Roa Rodriguez said...

nice one here sir! :-) wish i can come and visit your city, manhatta! LOL!

JJRod'z

Kay L. Davies said...

Wonderful Whitman poem, Berowne, so perfect for the prompt, although from another age.

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie’s Guide to Adventurous Travel

Kathe W. said...

wonderful words- love it- and I was born not too far....Brooklyn!

Gel said...

great word choices convey the vibe!
Happy Sun. Scribs

Berowne said...

Kay L D: "Wonderful Whitman poem, Berowne, so perfect for the prompt."
Thanks, Kay; a fine comment.

Berowne said...

Kathe W: "Wonderful words- love it."
I don't feel dull, I don't feel hollow. I found myself in your "Blogs I Follow." Thanks.

Lyn said...

"Manners free"..could be Mannahatta! Splendid that you found this...amazingly up to the minute!

junkthief said...

Wow, we were on somewhat of a similar path with a 19th century take on the city.

sharplittlepencil said...

The name "Mannahatta" surely has more music in it. God bless Whitman, and you too, Berowne, for sharing this. Amy

Berowne said...

Dear sharplittle: Always great to hear from you -- thanks.

Tess Kincaid said...

Give me the streets of Manhattan! This is one of my favorites...

Brian Miller said...

nice...perfect play on the prompt...i do enjoy my visits there....

Anonymous said...

Dear Berowne: Huh! Love your ample description of place "The down-town streets, the jobbers' houses of business, the houses
of business of the ship-merchants..." and, as always, I am always amazed at what I learn here! Mannahatta...Lenape
language meaning island of many hills... this classic from the master Leaves of Grass Walt Whitman! The down-town streets, the jobbers' houses of business, the houses
of business of the ship-merchants Thank-you!jj Chiccoreal

The Brave said...

That is beauitful. Thank you for sharing this.

Jo Bryant said...

Loved this one - not familiar with Whitman - so now I will have to go seek after reading these comments.
:)

thingy said...

I've got the Green Acres theme song in my head. I love New York, but, "faaaaarm livin' is where I'd rather be."

I love your post. Your love for the city comes through.

Ann Grenier said...

Wonderful idea to post Whitman's poem. Different, as always expected from you! Thanks, I enjoyed reading.

izzy said...

Great and vivid thanks!

Brigid said...

Now I want to book a transatlantic plane ticket, some day, I'll make it there! Sounds a little like Dublin, we probably just have a tad more rain!

Margaret said...

Always learn something here. Thanks!

Lena said...

Oh, I'd love to spend winter in your city....!

Berowne said...

Brigid: "Sounds a little like Dublin."
Though you may have a little trouble with the New York brogue. :-)

Tumblewords: said...

Ah, yes! It is!

Helen said...

Oh, how I loved reading this ... slowly, carefully, savoring each line.

Monika said...

Incredibly beautiful.
~ Smiles Monika

earlybird said...

I don't know Whitman so thanks for this.

Berowne said...

What fine comments from earlybird, Monika, Helen and Tumblewords -- thanks so much.

ninotaziz said...

Well, that was enjoyable. It was as if it was spring suddenly in the middle of winter.

Susie Clevenger said...

Wonderful celebration in words for a loved city...Thanks for sharing this Whitman poem

Tina´s PicStory said...

great shot :)

mrsnesbitt said...

Love Walt Whitman's poems - especially the ones which depict animal life and feelings towards. Thanks so much - a lovely post.
Denise ABC Team

Roger Owen Green said...

Such a terrific imagery. Need to visit there again.
ROG, ABC Wednesday team

Lolamouse said...

Thanks for sharing this poem. It's always nice to read one of the classics!

Nicholas V. said...

Very appropriate for the image! One cannot help becoming nostalgic looking at the picture and reading these words...

kaykuala said...

Manhattan, everything that Walt said and more!

Hank

Christine said...

Thankyou for this.. from a long way away about a place I have never been to. I can feel the love for place here.

Hildred and Charles said...

Beautiful imagery.

Rinkly Rimes said...

I presume that was the original name for New York and that you're a New Yorker. Or am I wrong?

Dave King said...

A post to savour.

Berowne said...

Rinkly R: "...and that you're a New Yorker. Or am I wrong?"
I'm not a New Yorker now, tho I was for years.

Berowne said...

My cup is in the process of runnething over, what with such encouraging comments from the likes of ninotaziz, Susie C, mrsnesbitt, Roger O G, lolamouse, Nicholas V, kaykuala, Christine, Hildred & Charles and Dave King. My sincere thanks.

capturedalive said...

ooooooooo thats a new one for me too. Love te name and the poem

Pheno, ABCW Team

Morning said...

rich and tasty words.

amazing poetry.

Berowne said...

Morning: "Rich and tasty words."
Rich and tasty comment -- thanks.

Bee's Blog said...

Every line a delight. Thank you for sharing this. The closest I've been to Manhattan is flying across its skyline at sunset in 1973. Left a lasting inmpression. That and and Ella's 'Manhattan'

Caddoc Trellis said...

What's in a name?

Manveen Kaur said...

though have never been to Manhattan but your poem is really beautiful

 
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