Song of Justin

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Through me forbidden voices,

Voices of sexes and lusts, voices veil’d and I remove the veil,

Voices indecent by me clarified and transfigur’d.

~ “Song of Myself” p. 211

I chose this passage because I like to consider myself a free spirit. Most people claim to be one, but so few actually practice what they preach. Whitman seems to be the real deal when it comes to removing whatever veils society likes to keep over things, and talking about taboo subjects frankly. He explores issues of race and sexuality in a way that was shocking for the time (even shocking to some people now) and does it so unapologetically that I have to give him props. I also like to think of this passage as his way of saying he’ll give a voice to those who aren’t allowed to speak for themselves (slaves being one example). For all of Whitman’s talk about egotism and whatnot, I find his writing to be quite altruistic.

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