"O Captain! my Captain!"
Walt Whitman wrote the poem "O Captain! my Captain!" after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Whitman describes Lincoln as the captain of the ship, as the leader of the country; he also refers to him as a father: "Here Captain! dear father!"(13), "My father doesn’t feel my arm,"(18). Clearly, a captain is not a father. Why, then, does Whitman connect the two together? Are there certain similarities between them that can't be avoided? A captain is a person who leads his ship from place to place. Every decision concerning the ship and the crew is made by the captain; he has great responsibility for his people. By carrying the title 'captain', he agrees to attend to all duties as leader of the ship. Part of the captain's job is to give orders and to demand that they will be followed accordingly; his main concern is the safety of his crew. Sometimes, the crew doesn’t seem to agree with the rules and limitations that were made by the captain, and that makes it difficult to obey them. These rules can create fear and distance between the captain and his people. But, eventually, the crew will realize that the captain had made those rules for their own good. Once they will come to this realization, they will start to respect and to trust their captain completely. They will feel safe when he is around them; they will start looking at him as their anchor. A father is much like a captain, yet, different. A father, like the captain, takes his kids on a journey, the journey of life. He is responsible for their safety and well being through out the journey. In order for this journey to be a successful one, the father has to give rules and to create limitations for his kids. Growing up, the kids understand that every rule and every limitation that was made by their father was for their own good. They start to respect and trust their father; they seek advice from him and they view him as their source of...
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