Carl Sandburg - West Fargo Public Schools

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Carl Sandburg
Biography
Collected
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
By: James Welch
A Walk in the Shoes of Sandburg
Biography
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“Here is the difference between Dante, Milton, and
me. They wrote about Hell and never saw the
place. I wrote about Chicago after looking the town
over for years and years” (BrainyQuote).
This famous quote by Carl Sandburg, gives us a clear
picture of what his life was like, while he lived in
Chicago. Carl August Sandburg was born in
Galesburg, Illinois on the 6th of January of 1878 to
August and Clara Sandburg (“Carl Sandburg”,
uncp.edu). August and Clara emigrated from Sweden
and adopted the surname of Sandburg (“Carl
Sandburg’s Biography”). Upon moving from
Sweden, Clara and August bought a three-bedroom
cottage in Galesburg, where they raised their child.
Sandburg’s father was a blacksmith helper at the
Chicago Burlington and Quincy railroad. August
supported the Sandburg family, while Clara was a
stay at home mom. August and Carl were indeed very
close, until Sandburg decided he didn’t want to be the
generic working man of America (“Carl Sandburg”,
Poets.org). From this point on Sandburg and his
father grew farther and farther apart.
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Sandburg worked a variety of jobs, before he began
writing poetry. Not even legally an adult yet, he worked as
a bricklayer, ice harvester, and threshed hay in Kansas
(“Carl Sandburg’s Biography”). Although, in 1897
Sandburg decided it was time to leave, he hopped on a
train and became a hobo. He decided he wasn’t someone
who could stick around for a long period of time, and on
this trip, Sandburg received some of his vital information
he used for his poems, such as his strong distrust for
capitalism. As significant as these memories might be, the
most influential part of Sandburg’s life happened in early
1898 when he volunteered to fight in the Spanish-American
war (“Carl Sandburg”, Poets.org). After the war Sandburg
met the woman he felt was the most beautiful woman in the
world, Ms. Lilian Steichen. Since then, he has written
poems until his death in his North Carolina home on July
22, 1967(“Carl Sandburg” uncp.edu).
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Sandburg wasn’t an exceptional scholar throughout grade school. He
struggled with the concept of learning and why things need to be a certain
way for them to function properly. Upon graduating from 8th grade at 13
years of age, Sandburg dropped out of school and entered the workforce
(“Carl Sandburg”, poets.org). After the war in late 1898, Sandburg
attended Lombard College. While attending Lombard, Sandburg
became an active member in the Poor Writers’ Club, which is a literary
organization in which the members met to read and critique poetry
(“Carl Sandburg’s Biography”). It was in this club that Sandburg met a
professor, Phillip Green Wright, who strongly encouraged Sandburg to
become a full time poet. Sandburg and Mr. Wright became closer than
any usual professor-student relationship. Mr. Wright willingly paid for
Sandburg’s first volume of poetry, “Reckless Ecstasy” (“Carl
Sandburg”, uncp.edu).
Biography
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While it is true that Sandburg never received a
diploma from Lombard, he was later honored by not
only the college in which he attended, but also
colleges such as Northwestern University and Knox
College. These colleges honored Sandburg for his
excellent work in the art of poetry and use of free
verse (“Carl Sandburg”, Poets.org). Although he
was recognized as a poet by universities and
colleges, it was in 1939 that his biggest
accomplishment occurred when his poem “Abraham
Lincoln: The War Years” was a Pulitzer Prize
winner. If one Pulitzer wasn’t enough, he received
his second for his poetic work titled “Complete
Poems” in 1950 (“Carl Sandburg’s Biography”).
Biography
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Sandburg remains a world-renowned poet. He is especially known for
his use of free verse, which is poetry that doesn’t rhyme or have a
specific meter. Before the 1920’s Sandburg rhymed and used rhythm
to emphasize his poems. Upon switching to free verse in 1919, people
commonly said, “if you didn’t like free verse, you will after you listen
to Sandburg” (“Carl Sandburg”, Poets.org). This quote clearly depicts
that Sandburg was at the top of the free verse world during this time
era. Many different aspects of Sandburg’s life formed a basis for his
poems; some of which were about his wife, Lillian “Paula” Sandburg
or another true love of Sandburg’s, Chicago (“Carl Sandburg’s
Biography”). Sandburg enjoyed the tenacity and competitiveness of
Chicago. It is here where he made numerous world known poems. To
grip the reader’s attention in these poems, Sandburg used poetic
devices such as similes, onomatopoeias, and metaphors (“Carl
Sandburg”, uncp.edu). With Sandburg’s incredible free verse poems
in direct relation with these devices, his poems are remembered and
will continue to be thought of as true poetic masterpieces. Sandburg
was a true poet who will be remembered for his resilient personality
and the ability to not give up on his dreams. This quote by George
Bernard is an excellent descriptor of how Carl Sandburg viewed life,
“You see things and say ‘Why?’ but I dream things and say ‘Why
not?”(“Inspirational Quotes About Life”).
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Chicago
Sketch
Masses
Lost
The Harbor
They Will Say
Mill Doors
Subway
Fish Crier
Picnic Boat
Happiness
Muckers
Blacklisted
Graceland
Pool
Fog
Troths
Losses
White Shoulders
Kin
Killers
Among the Red Guns
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TEN minutes now I have been looking at this.
I have gone by here before and wondered about it.
This is a bronze memorial of a famous general
Riding horseback with a flag and a sword and a revolver
on him.
I want to smash the whole thing into a pile of junk to be
hauled away to the scrap yard.
I put it straight to you,
After the farmer, the miner, the shop man, the factory
hand, the fireman and the teamster,
Have all been remembered with bronze memorials,
Shaping them on the job of getting all of us
Something to eat and something to wear,
When they stack a few silhouettes
Against the sky
Here in the park,
And show the real huskies that are doing the work of
the world, and feeding people instead of butchering them,
Then maybe I will stand here
And look easy at this general of the army holding a flag
in the air,
And riding like hell on horseback
Ready to kill anybody that gets in his way,
Ready to run the red blood and slush the bowels of men
all over the sweet new grass of the prairie.
Analysis
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Carl Sandburg’s “Ready to Kill” uses imagery in a way that
most authors cannot obtain. Imagery is the use of vividly
descriptive words and phrases, to enhance the writer’s view of
what is taking place in a literary work. Carl Sandburg‘s quote,
“I want to smash the whole thing into a pile of junk to be/ hauled
away to the scrap yard”, in which Sandburg is describing a
statue of an army general, clearly depicts his hatred for the
killing of another man. He feels that generals and army
commanders are not the people who deserve to have statues and
memorials constructed in their honor. He feels the average
workingman of America, such as a miner or a farmer, should be
the ones who deserve statues in their honor. Sandburg thinks
that generals do no more than just ride on a horse and destroy
anything in their path, while the workingmen are the people
who provide food and shelter for our country’s people.
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Ending the poem with great imagery of what he feels the
generals do in the army, with the quote “Ready to run the red
blood and slush the bowels of men/ all over the sweet new
grass of the prairie.”, Sandburg gives us a clear image of the
war atrocities that do occur. Sandburg used vivid imagery to
better enhance the picture the reader sees. He felt that the
more clearly the poem can be seen, the more likely people will
start to dislike the problems in war. Carl Sandburg is indeed
an expert at using imagery. He can make the author feel like
you are at the sight of this heated battle or you are in the alley
where the woman was raped. Sandburg’s “Ready to Kill”,
was the perfect poem based on the literary term imagery, and
will be thought of as one of Sandburg’s greatest for many
years to come.
Biography
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“Pool”, is not one of the longest poems Sandburg had
written; although, I feel it is one of his greatest literary pieces.
This poem makes my mind picture something I would not
normally view. When I started this poem, I thought it was
going to be some sort of horror. It wasn’t until I read the line
“A tea cup of ashes or so”, that made me think that this man
had passed away and been cremated. When finished, I felt
that whoever this man was, Sandburg was close too.
“Pool” by Carl Sandburg
OUT of the fire
Came a man sunken
To less than cinders,
A tea-cup of ashes or so.
And I,
The gold in the house,
Writhed into a stiff pool.
Biography
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Sandburg’s poem, “Docks”, is one of my personal
favorites. It makes me feel as if I was standing with
Sandburg as he looked upon the “fathomed harbor”. His
vivid and descriptive choices of words let me see the docks
and the ships as he saw them. Sandburg’s use of imagery,
leads the readers’ minds on a trip to the docks as Sandburg
described in this poem. If this element would not have been
so strong, us as readers would not have been able to fully
comprehend and enjoy this literary masterpiece.
Inspired
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Click here to go to
Sandburg’s Poem
“Docks”
Biography
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DOCKS
STROLLING along
By the teeming docks,
I watch the ships put out.
Black ships that heave and lunge
And move like mastodons
Arising from lethargic sleep.
The fathomed harbor
Calls them not nor dares
Them to a strain of action,
But outward, on and outward,
Sounding low-reverberating calls,
Shaggy in the half-lit distance,
They pass the pointed headland,
View the wide, far-lifting wilderness
And leap with cumulative speed
To test the challenge of the sea.
Plunging,
Doggedly onward plunging,
Into salt and mist and foam and sun.
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BROTHER, I am fire
Surging under the ocean floor.
I shall never meet you, brother-Not for years, anyhow;
Maybe thousands of years, brother.
Then I will warm you,
Hold you close, wrap you in circles,
Use you and change you-Maybe thousands of years, brother.
Click here to go to
James Welch’s
“Stranger” inspired
by Sandburg
Biography
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Faces, I am lost
Erupting with emotions
Volcanoes upon which I have yet to seek
Months, Days, Hours, Seconds
Until I meet
Ice, what I feel
When you walk by
Used me
For personal pleasure
Jokes, laughs, chuckles?
All on my expense
When shall we meet?
Maybe thousands of years, brother.
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THE fog comes
on little cat feet.
It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.
Click here to go to
James Welch’s
“Rain” inspired by
Carl Sandburg
Biography
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Biography
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A young boy, Confused
Upon a New York Street
Cars and People
Buzzing about
Like the inside of a beehive
The boy turns around
Spots
Between legs, briefcases, bags
Like trying to look through
An endless word find
A parchment of paper
Is what he sees
Turning around
Knowing not what he now possesses
Holding it,
Motionless
Like a crocodile, waiting to pounce
A tap on his shoulder
That is what he feels
A Man
Emotionless
Like the Mona Lisa
Grabs for the Parchment
“Hello Mr. Benjamin”
The Young Boy
Lost without a cause
Watching
Watching
Watching
The Man disappears
Into the crowd
Like pen under white out
As he wonders
“Who is Mr. Benjamin?”
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She crawls to the top of the cliff
Where she engorges in her last view of life.
Twilight, a rainbow
Like all the colors of the underside of a rainbow trout.
Once Hidden,
Now Found.
The Casket,
Like a Mask
Lilac covered.
Frost nipping
At the ceremonial attendees
Waiting..Waiting..Waiting..
For the girl
Once filled with laughter
Now a shell of an old woman.
Biography
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2 A.M. summer nights
Parent’s lights
Not so bright
The time is right
Here we go
Out the window
Down the road
Rappin’ Weezy
Jammin’ out
Sun’s comin’ out
Time to go to bed
Tomorrow’s another day
Better than the next
Always gold
Pimpin’ clothes
Might just have
A swagger overload
Facebook loaded
Friends are ready
For the night
Of our lives
Better Make sure
We live it up
Like our time is up!
Biography
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http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/c/carl_sandburg.html
http://carl-sandburg.com/biography.htm
http://www.poets.org/poet.php/prmPID/28
http://www.uncp.edu/home/canada/work/canam/sandburg.htm
http://inspirationalquotesaboutlife.com/
http://www.amelishan.com/assets/Image/FaceBook-Logo.png
http://0.tqn.com/d/gocentralamerica/1/0/U/-/-/-/dock.JPG
http://www.ci.lancaster.ma.us/Pages/LancasterMA_Events/S014E8F11014ECD37.0/clock_clip_art_03.jpg
http://www.intellectualblathering.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/lilac-11.jpg
http://static.travelblog.org/Wallpaper/pix/sunset_wallpaper_brazil-1600x1200.jpg
http://blog.spafinder.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/flames.jpg
http://www.howaboutchicago.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/Chicago_skyline.jpg
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_khYoWIBgmBI/SfXFgU5QwI/AAAAAAAABGo/F1l6yNc1aXk/s320/Sandburg2.jpg

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