Friends Like Whitman

Walt Whitman has been my favorite poet for about a thousand years. I love his expansiveness, his generosity, his gravity, his joy, his oomph!

One of my favorite bits from Leaves of Grass is where, accused of contradicting himself, he explains that "I am large, and contain multitudes."

There aren't a lot of people who are willing to see and know our contradicting parts, much less love us with them, but this week was a riot of knowing friends, and it was glorious. People who see me as saucy and spiritual, compassionate and capable, funny and bright, kind and bitchy.

It's such a gift to be seen. It's a holy thing to be seen, to be recognized. (Perhaps we can even say that
there is an element of evil in willfully not seeing people. How can we love our neighbor if we won't really look at our neighbor?) Some remarkable people go beyond, seeing us in the fullness of who we can grow into.

I'm wagging this morning, thinking of M and J and S and L, all of whom (magically, it seems) know and love me.

May you experience the same drenching in blessing.


  1. Stephen Weber1:21 PM

    I just taught Whitman last week and highlighted the same qualities you mentioned. Beautiful post, Diana!

  2. May you experience the same drenching in blessing.

    What a beautiful wish.

  3. Yes indeedy! One day a friend showed up unexpectedly at our door holding a jazz CD for us to check out. It was our favorite singer, Kurt Elling, singing The Leaves of Grass.


  4. Stephen: Thank you! Also-- I bet your class is great. (Did you have Baker for the Transcendentalists?)

    Mindy: Thank you! xoxo.

    Stratoz: That's MARVELOUS!


"So keep fightin' for freedom and justice, beloveds, but don't you forget to have fun doin' it. Lord, let your laughter ring forth. Be outrageous, ridicule the fraidy-cats, rejoice in all the oddities that freedom can produce. And when you get through kickin' ass and celebratin' the sheer joy of a good fight, be sure to tell those who come after how much fun it was."
-Saint Molly Ivins