In this poem, the poet, Whitman compares man to animals. He finds that man lacks many virtues that animals have. The poet desires to live among the animals because they are calm and self-confident. They are well contented. They do not sweat and complain about their condition like human beings. They do not possess the mania of possessing things. No animals have to bow to another of their kind. They all are equal and remain satisfied. The poet has a deep desire to learn from animals. They do not have any kind of falsehood. The poet is much surprised at their quality. He wants to learn them though he had dropped them carelessly.
DETAILED SUMMARY (2):-
1.Comfortable with Animals: The poet wishes that he would switch over his loyalty and faith from human beings to animals. He wants to live with them as he feels more comfortable in their company. Animals appear to be very peaceful, independent, self-sufficient and self-contained. He is fascinated by them. He stands and looks at them for a long time.
2. Animals don’t Sweat and Whine: Human beings are never satisfied with their condition. They are always demanding. Animals never worry themselves about their condition. Nor do they ever complain. They have a clear conscience. They enjoy a sound sleep at night. They never have to weep for their sins. On the other hand, humans suffer from a guilty conscience. Their misdeeds trouble their souls and they never enjoy a sound sleep at night. They weep over their sins and misdeeds and shed tears on them at night. Human beings pretend to show their love, faith and duty to God. Such pretentious and false worship make the poet sick. Animals never do such pretensions. They never display their love and duty to God. Actually, such issues are meaningless to them.
3. Animals Don’t Suffer from Mania of Owning Things: The poet doesn’t find even a single animal that may appear to be dissatisfied. There is no animal which suffers from the madness of possessing things. On the other hand, humans are never satisfied. They are competing with one another in the mad race for material possessions.
4. No Respect for Ancestors: No animal shows respect by kneeling down to another animal. Nor do they show any respect to the ancestors of their race. These are the pretensions of human beings and not that of animals. No one is respectable or unhappy over the whole earth for them.
5. Poet Accepts Animals: Animals are straight forward. They show their relations to the poet. The poet responds to them positively too. He accepts them as they are. They have retained all those virtues which the ancestors of the human race shared with them in the past. Animals show those ‘tokens’ still in their possession. Unfortunately, humans had lost those virtues much earlier. The poet wonders how animals still retain them.
Main Points of the Poem
|1. What is the classification of animals?|
|2. What are the different types of invertebrates?|
|3. How are mammals different from other animals?|
|4. What are the main characteristics of birds?|
|5. How are amphibians different from reptiles?|