Poets & other citizens will gather on Saturday, May 31, 2014 at 6:00 PM at the Robert Burns statue in Washington Park in Albany, NY to celebrate the birthday of the quintessential American poet, Walt Whitman, with a reading of his poem “Song of Myself”. The event is sponsored by the Poetry Motel Foundation, & the Hudson Valley Writers Guild. It is free & open to the public. Persons interested in reading a section of Whitman’s poem can sign up to read at the event.
Walt Whitman was born on May 31, 1819 at West Hills, NY near Huntington on Long Island. “Song of Myself”, composed of over 1300 lines in 52 sections, first appeared in Whitman’s Leaves of Grass in 1855. The poem went through a number of revisions & changes until the 1881 edition of Leaves of Grass. Whitman died in 1892 in Camden, NJ. The theme of “Song of Myself”, as indeed it is of most of Whitman’s work, is the celebration of the individual, of the nation, and of the spiritual possibility within us all.
The Robert Burns statue is located in Albany’s Washington Park, along the park road that parallels Willett St. & the intersection of Hudson Ave. The reading will take place rain or shine; it is suggested that the public brings chairs or blankets to sit on. For more information call or email Dan Wilcox at firstname.lastname@example.org; or visit the Guild’s website, www.hvwg.org.