If you’re posting a Whitman poem for National Poetry Month, it’s hard to avoid putting one up on the anniversary of Lincoln’s death. Once that decision’s made, it’s all but impossible not to post “O Captain! My Captain.”
The New York Times has been running a commentary series, Disunion, on the Civil War. It’s worth reading for a number of reasons, but a recent piece focused on how the war affected Whitman and includes an interactive feature showing the start of Whitman’s imagined dialogue with Lincoln. The commentary on Whitman’s notebook was written by Adam Goodheart, whose 1861 covers the first year of the war and who has been a regular contributor to Disunion.
And just to bring things full circle, Carmine Sarracino is a Whitman scholar.