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The Runner Analysis

Author: Poetry of Walt Whitman Type: Poetry Views: 717

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ON a flat road runs the well-train'd runner;

He is lean and sinewy, with muscular legs;

He is thinly clothed--he leans forward as he runs,

With lightly closed fists, and arms partially rais'd.


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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

.: :.

From my experience as a runner, if one is \"well-train\'d,\" one can be running on something other than flat ground; flat runs make you feel fast, but don\'t have as much benefit. From that aspect, I would say that this is a metaphor for a necessary, but simple task. The runner approaches it like he should: the leaning in suggests that he\'s running at a decent pace (unless he\'s exhausted), and having his arms slightly raised and hands lightly closed implies that he\'s relaxed. He\'s taking on the run with full intentions of taking it seriously, but he doesn\'t need to. The poem encourages us to take all of life\'s tasks seriously.

| Posted on 2011-08-29 | by a guest

.: :.

I think the "strength and power" aspect referred to by by A Guest on 2008-02-1 has clear Biblical connotations. Think of the reference to the highway in the desert formed by the mountains and hills being flattened - used by Handel in his "Messiah". The Bible also mentions running the race before us with "perseverance" - but I'm not going to tell you exactly where to find these - a good Biblical Concordance is an invaluble refernce book for all students of great western Literature!

| Posted on 2009-06-29 | by a guest

.: possible analysis :.

I'm doing an analysis for this poem for my english class, and while talking to my teacher about it, we thought it might have to do something about how people deal with problems. "on a flat road runs the well train'd runner" could be a metaphore for life, and how we all have problems and as life goes on, we learn to deal with those problems. "he leans forward as he runs" could be a way of showing how when we do face more problems, we can either back down and let them take over, or we can lean in, take hold, and face the problem at hand with strength and power. I feel that is a relevant viewpoint for this poem, feel free to disagree as I'm sure many of you will.

| Posted on 2008-02-18 | by a guest

.: historical context :.

During this time artists raised laborers to the level of gods in classical poetry. Whitman had a similar attraction for the runner that the Ancient Greeks had for the olympian athletes. I don't know what else to add it's a simple poem but the thing makes me write more which is ridiculious I need other people's ideas to build off of damn it GRRR even longer I wonder if they'll delete this. Do they seriously think any one would spell all thier worth while ideas onto a website where they can't even take credit for them

| Posted on 2005-09-25 | by Approved Guest

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