I Hear America Sighing (Sequel to Whitman’s “I Hear America Singing”)


I hear America sighing, the different moans I hear

Those of teachers, each one sighing as it should be strong

The secretary sighing with redundancy

The programmer sighing, repeating abstractions

The clerk sighs into the screen

The investor sighs only after laughter

The delicious sighing of the rich!

The wealthy and their woeful worries

Sighing with closed eyes

Each sigh belongs to everyone

As each day no longer is itself

But belongs to every other day as well

The executive sighing with sealed shut eyes

Blind to life and serendipity

About Sean William Lynch
Sean William Lynch is a poet from New Jersey who was born in 1992. Lynch's first book of poems "the city of your mind" was published in 2013 by Whirlwind Press. Frank Sherlock, the poet laureate of Philadelphia, called Lynch's debut poetry book "visionary." CA Conrad claimed that the book was "marvelous!" S.W. Lynch's writing has been featured in numerous publications online and in print, including Milkfist, Poetry Quarterly, and Tincture Journal.

21 Responses to I Hear America Sighing (Sequel to Whitman’s “I Hear America Singing”)

  1. neelkanth says:

    So very thoughtful a poem. It’s nice.

  2. I’m not familiar with the original poem, but I like this one.

  3. zoevega says:

    I hear the world sighing, the reasons they do not know. :) This just shows how much discontent is harbored within us while playing on a famous poets views and contending them!

    • S. W. Lynch says:

      Yes, but to make myself clear I am not contending with the great Walt Whit. That’s why I called it a sequel and not a response. Walt was talking about the beauty of seeing and hearing hard working Americans that worked with their hands. In the 21st century, this is becoming less and less the case, as people sit at their computers and work abstractly in an alienated, highly competitive atmosphere. I agree with Whitman, and I feel like he would be sad to see the state of our society and our people today.

  4. evilkittyrulesyou1221 says:

    I must add, thoughtful and insightful as well. :) Really liked your poem.

  5. Dizzy says:

    I think Walt would be mighty flattered, kid. Mighty. 💋

  6. Your words evoke strong images. Well written poems & essays. Thank you!

  7. I like your response to WW. I am reading Much Ado About Nothing right now. There is a song in it: Sigh No More My Ladies–This same song inspired Mumford and Sons song Sigh No More. This has gotten me thinking about the art of sighing, and all the ways we use this expression in our lives. This post was very timely for me. Thanks!

    • S. W. Lynch says:

      Haven’t read Much Ado in years, but now that you mention it, I remember that song. Interesting factoid about sighing you brought up. I’m glad to have coincidentally been relevant to your current sighing streak, and thanks for the reply Michael.

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