Treasure Island

Walt Whitman

(31 May 1819 - 26 March 1892 / New York / United States)

That Shadow, My Likeness



THAT shadow, my likeness, that goes to and fro, seeking a livelihood,
chattering, chaffering;
How often I find myself standing and looking at it where it flits;
How often I question and doubt whether that is really me;
--But in these, and among my lovers, and caroling my songs,
O I never doubt whether that is really me.

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

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  • Cj Housh (12/2/2005 11:05:00 AM)

    I'm not sure though if he changes himself for his lovers, and that the shadow means the shadow of himself, or if he changes himself for the world and can only be himself, natural like his shadow, around his lovers. (Report) Reply

  • Cavanaugh Greenwood (12/2/2005 10:42:00 AM)

    I agree with you cody. I think the poem focuses on himself and who he is. It is like he questions himself constantly when he is around his 'lovers', its like he changes for them ya know? (Report) Reply

  • Cj Housh (12/2/2005 10:39:00 AM)

    To me, he's saying how the Shadow is his real self, and that only with his 'lovers' and while singing can he truly be himself. Whitman getting in touch with his inner show girl. (Report) Reply

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