Home  »  Prose Works  »  1. One or Two Index Items

Walt Whitman (1819–1892). Prose Works. 1892.

II. Collect

1. One or Two Index Items

THOUGH the ensuing COLLECT and preceding SPECIMEN DAYS are both largely from memoranda already existing, the hurried peremptory needs of copy for the printers, already referr’d to—(the musicians’ story of a composer up in a garret rushing the middle body and last of his score together, while the fiddlers are playing the first parts down in the concert-room)—of this haste, while quite willing to get the consequent stimulus of life and motion, I am sure there must have resulted sundry technical errors. If any are too glaring they will be corrected in a future edition.

A special word about “PIECES IN EARLY YOUTH,” at the end. On jaunts over Long Island, as boy and young fellow, nearly half a century ago, I heard of, or came across in my own experience, characters, true occurrences, incidents, which I tried my ’prentice hand at recording—(I was then quite an “abolitionist” and advocate of the “temperance” and “anti-capital-punishment” causes)—and publish’d during occasional visits to New York city. A majority of the sketches appear’d first in the “Democratic Review,” others in the “Columbian Magazine,” or the “American Review,” of that period. My serious wish were to have all those crude and boyish pieces quietly dropp’d in oblivion—but to avoid the annoyance of their surreptitious issue, (as lately announced, from outsiders,) I have, with some qualms, tack’d them on here. A Dough-Face Song came out first in the “Evening Post”— Blood-Money, and Wounded in the House of Friends, in the “Tribune.”

Poetry To-Day in America, &c., first appear’d (under the name of “The Poetry of the Future,”) in “The North American Review” for February, 1881. A Memorandum at a Venture, in same periodical, some time afterward.

Several of the convalescent out-door scenes and literary items, preceding, originally appear’d in the fortnightly “Critic,” of New York.