in the poem 'i was looking a long while' whitman is saying that books or a library might not be the best way to find out pieces of history. you can find it in the lives of people today and in different peoples languages, social customs, literatures, and arts, like whitman said.
cameron- i thought you had a good comment on this one. i thought the same thing on it. i thought whitman was trying to explain how there is a lot of cultures around the world. he said taht there were some that people knoew about and some that we didnt. he compared the people to germs because germs come in all shapes and sizes like people do.
i thought 'how solemn as one by one' by walt whitman was a good poem and i liked reading it. in this poem whitman is talking about troops coming home from overseas and him looking at all of their faces and thinking that they were invincible ('...which the bullet could never kill, nor the bayonet stab.') and having great admiration for them and not even knowing them but still having great respect for what they did.