When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer

When I heard the learn’d astronomer;
When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me;
When I was shown the charts and the diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them;
When I, sitting, heard the astronomer, where he lectured with much applause in the lecture-room,
How soon, unaccountable, I became tired and sick;
Till rising and gliding out, I wander’d off by myself,
In the mystical moist night-air, and from time to time,
Look’d up in perfect silence at the stars.

Walt Whitman, born on this date in 1819 in Huntington, New York.

For more Whitman resources, SBU Libraries offers books of and about Whitman’s writing and life,  as well as scholarly articles on the Long Island poet and even audio visual materials and musical scores.

Posted in Arts & Humanities, Writing and Literature