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Visitors' Comments about:

A Noiseless Patient Spider

Walt Whitman

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2005-03-17
Added by: Cassie
I don't think it's right for you to say that everyone is wrong. That's not the right attitude at all. The great thing about poetry is you can interpret the poem in anyway you like. The suggestions are wonderful and I see how you feel this poem is about the soul reaching out for something to hold on to and about man vs. nature.
2005-05-19
Added by: Jabberwock
Sorry to criticise the American Emperor and his new clothes, but who ever has witnessed a non-noiseless spider??
2005-07-24
Added by: Ken Root
Oh dear friends, don't you realize that Walt is speaking of the excitement & fearfulness of life. He is identifying himself with both the couragous endeavoring spirit of the spider and the hope of the catch of life.
2005-09-27
Added by: dave
I think that we have to stop emphasizing disparities between the spider and Whitman's soul. In this poem, the two are perfect metaphorical analogues; they both share the common primary theme of isolation(in relation to vast, emotionless space enveloping) coupled with individual activity in reaction to their indifferent environment, which the poet is clearly metaphorically linking. While the spider emits a sticky web from his thorax to adapt to his environment, the human animal philosophizes, measures, and deifies the world around him to get his proverbial web to "catch somewhere," because he has to adapt to this vast, cold world but also because it is in his intrinsic nature to do so, as natural as a spider spinning a web. Another unique aspect of this poem is the unusual solipsistic implications that Whitman presents, contrary to his usual notions of the total inter-relatedness and common equanimity of the human soul(of which "Leaves of Grass" itself is a metaphor). However, one may have doubts as to whether Whitman was ever "Noiseless"!
You're All Right
2005-10-15
Added by: Angel
I find it baffling that any poetry appreciator can say anyone's interpretation is 'wrong' - as 'graob' did. Did Walt call you up from Iridium and tell you that the readers are wrong? Reality is subjective. Even if you knew what Walt meant by the poem, you still would not be able to perceive it in the same way as him.
all of you need to get a life!
2005-11-27
Added by: poetry smells
i appreciate your comments for my miserable english class papers in which your comments are extremely helpful. however, all of you need to go outside and enjoy the fresh air...i think whitman would be proud if you did. :)
2005-12-04
Added by: aixa
i think that Whitman uses this poem to voice his ideas of transcendentalsim. bc he was believed in transcendentalsim.
with this in mind, he gives us the imagery created by a spider tirelessly working to connect with something, in this case, the web that he is trying to make. in comparison, we are like the spider, trying to connect ourselves spiritually. Whitman uses nature to compare with the idea of connectivity with God, or what every spiritual high, because transcendetaslism focuses on getting that conectivity through personal expereince and no other figure. but the tone gives a specific change in the second half with the word "till". which give a sense of hope. the poem then turns to the idea that the spider, through its hard work, and personal expereince might actually connect with his "web".
This poem also gives alot of imagery, which emasizes tone, diction, and and extended metaphor. The tone of silence, wich is iven by the title, and being isloated. the metaphor that is rought out is the speaker's soul and the spider, the goal for the speaker is connectivity with god, and the spider the web. both in "measureless oceans of space" whch are 'detached" and "seeking" to find connectivity with the "web"
well
2005-12-13
Added by: Jay Tug
Like all poetry and writing.. there is not a true meaning for anything... all poems and writing can be debated in several different ways. All of you make good points about the poem and all of you are right with you're arguements... that's the beauty of poetry.. it's debateable
my interpretation
2005-12-15
Added by: flor
Whitman is learning how to explore the vast and vacant surroundings from the spider. He wants to learn this so he can through his soul out in the chance someone can hold on to it.
True meaning
2006-02-07
Added by: Kay
The true meaning of the poem? The true meaning is what something means to an individual. Maybe it's not what the author intended. But did you ever stop to think that what the author intended was for indivuduals to draw their own meaning? And you cannot make the same conclusions about metaphorical meaning without the same background knowledge. Everyone has their insight, of course, just try to be open minded. You might learn something.

Kay

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