When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd Questions and Answers
by Walt Whitman

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"When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd" by Walt Whitman is as much a poem about affirming life as it is a poem about death. Do you agreee?

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The poem mourns the loss of President Lincoln, charting the journey of his coffin throughout the country. Yet, Whitman also uses the poem to reconcile himself with the idea of death. The striking symbol of the "lilac blooming perennial" evokes both the continuing mourning of the poet but also his enduring love. Read alongside the sections that describe the incessant flow of human activities (particularly section 14), the symbol of the lilacs comes to represent perpetual renewal of life and thus its affirmation. Other important symbols that represent the reconciliation of life and death are the "powerful, western, fallen Star" and the bird.

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I definitely agree. If you read this excellent poem lamenting the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln carefully, you will see, apart from the many instances of images and words that convey the poet's shock and sorrow about the death of the President,...

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