The People, Yes, by Carl Sandburg
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A long poem that makes brilliant use of the legends and myths, the tall tales and sayings of America.
As Irish poet Padraic Colum said, “The fine thing about The People, Yes is that it is indubitable speech. Here is a man speaking, a man who knows all sorts and conditions of men, who can be wise and witty, stirring and nonsensical with them all. Carl Sandburg is a master of his own medium; he can deliver himself with the extraordinary clarity of the comic strip caption, with the punch of the tip-top editorial, with the jingle of the American ballad. If America has a folksinger today he is Carl Sandburg, a singer who comes out of the prairie soil, who has the prairie inheritance, who can hand back to the people a creation that has scraps of their own insight, humor, and imagination, a singer, it should be added, who both says and sings . . . He has a passion that gives dignity to all he says. It is a passion for humanity, not merely for the man with depths of personality in him, but for the ordinary man and woman . . . The People, Yes is his most appealing volume.”