What are some examples of images in Song of Myself, what senses to they appeal to?

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James Kelley | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

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Imagery is all over the place in Whitman's "Song of Myself," and that imagery appeals to a wide range of the senses. Here are some quick examples from section 2:

Sight: "The play of shine and shade on the trees as the supple boughs wag"

Sound: "The sound of the belch'd words of my voice loos'd to the eddies of the wind"

Touch: "A few light kisses, a few embraces, a reaching around of arms"

Smell: "Houses and rooms are full of perfumes, the shelves are crowded with perfumes, / I breathe the fragrance myself and know it and like it, / The distillation would intoxicate me also, but I shall not let it."

Taste: "The atmosphere is not a perfume, it has no taste of the
distillation, it is odorless, / It is for my mouth forever, I am in love with it"

Those examples are all from just one short section of the poem! Imagery is all over the place in Whitman's "Song of Myself." He definitely philosophizes and deals in abstract ideas in his poetry, but he always seems to bring things back to the level of concrete, sensory details.

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