Carl Sandburg - Chicago Poems
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Carl Sandburg - Chicago Poems

 

Carl Sandburg was virtually unknown to the literary world when, in 1914, a group of his poems appeared in the nationally circulated Poetry magazine. Two years later his book Chicago Poems was published, and the thirty-eight-year-old author found himself on the brink of a career that would bring him international acclaim.

Carl Sandburg worked from the time he was a young boy. He quit school following his graduation from eighth grade in 1891 and spent a decade working a variety of jobs. He delivered milk, harvested ice, laid bricks, threshed wheat in Kansas, and shined shoes in Galesburg's Union Hotel before traveling as a hobo in 1897.

Sandburg's experiences working and traveling greatly influenced his writing and political views. He saw first-hand the sharp contrast between rich and poor, a dichotomy that instilled in him a distrust of capitalism.

GONE

EVERYBODY loved Chick Lorimer in our town.
                    Far off
               Everybody loved her.
So we all love a wild girl keeping a hold
On a dream she wants.
Nobody knows now where Chick Lorimer went.
Nobody knows why she packed her trunk. . a few
     old things
And is gone,
                    Gone with her little chin
                    Thrust ahead of her
                    And her soft hair blowing careless
                    From under a wide hat,
Dancer, singer, a laughing passionate lover.

Were there ten men or a hundred hunting Chick?
Were there five men or fifty with aching hearts?
               Everybody loved Chick Lorimer.
                    Nobody knows where she's gone.

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