I think that, like most of the folks in the seminar, I am seeing Whitman “everywhere” now. I most recently encountered a Whitmanic echo in contemporary southern fiction writer Allan Gurganus’s collection of short stories and novellas White People. That collection features the 1989 story “Reassurance.” The story’s first half is a full quotation of Whitman’s letter titled “Death of a Pennsylvania Soldier” that was included in “Specimen Days.” (It’s pages 791-92 in The Library of America’s Whitman: Poetry and Prose.) The story’s second half is Gurganus imagining the voice of Frank Irwin, the dead soldier, reassuring his mother using Whitman as a medium of sorts. Ultimately, the story becomes a meditation on reconciling one’s self and one’s family to death and marks yet again how important Whitman has been to Gurganus, a fact that’s unsurprising to readers of his first sprawling comic novel, The Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All, where Whitmanic presences and allusions are recurring.