۱۸۳۹. It was included in the first collection of poems published in 1839. “Each and All” represents wholeness in the universe and the interconnectedness among all parts of the world. The poem at first shows the relation between the individual and the universal, the “each” and the “all”. Then, it discusses some examples that reveal the interrelated parts which cannot be separated and at the end it states that beauty is not the ultimate goal but a way to understanding the truth of the world that is hidden in the perfect whole.
۳.۱.۱.۱ The Relation of Each and All to Shape a Unity
The poem introduces the unity in the universe through its title and some examples in the poem to show that each entity is related to its whole background.
The poem took its inspiration from another poem by the German Idealist Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), titled “Eins und Alles” which was published as “One and All” in the North American Review in April 1839.The last line of the poem “Each and All”, “I yielded myself to the perfect whole” (51), reflects some lines of Goethe’s poem: “How yearns the solitary soul / To melt into the boundless soul” (2-3). The lines of the poems show that the individual is resolved in the universal reality that is the truth of the world. The poem’s title draws on the Coleridgean idea of each and all or as Lawrence Buell names, the correspondential theory. Coleridge considers each object related to the whole reality in the world. The doctrine explains and illuminates the essential relationship between the part and the whole, between the particular and universal (Felker14). Likewise, Emerson shapes his doctrine about the opposite substances. He states that the contrasting qualities have the same reality.
۳.۱.۱.۲. The Interrelatedness of all Things in the World
This part of analysis focuses on showing the interconnection of everything to the other one in the world. It also reveals that the reality of each entity is to be found in the reality of the whole things in the world. In fact each essence is to be defined by the universal reality of all the essences in the universe.
The first section of the poem (lines 1-12) holds that all things in the world are interrelated. This relation is not always clear to man. People don’t know that their behaviors affect other things in the world. In fact each person “little thinks” about the relation between “the flowers” on top of a hill and the “cow” in the fields below. A man doesn’t know that when “tolling his bell at noon” causes Napoleon to stop and remember enjoyable memories:
The sexton tolling the bell at noon,
Dreams not that great Napoleon
Stops his horse, and lists with delight,
Whilst his files sweep round yon Alpine height
Nor knowest thou what argument
Thy life to thy neighbor’s creed has lent. (All poems 5-10)
Tiffany Wayne states that we do not know what influence one thing or one person might have upon another; we cannot know “what argument / Thy life to thy neighbor’s creed has lent” (9-10). The poet reminds us, however, that, even if we fail to see the connections, “All are needed by each one” (Wayne, Critical Companion to Emerson 83). Emerson believes that all the entities in the world have the same reality and everything is united with other things. Consequently, each creature affects another one because the source of all of them is the same reality. Wayne writes in her analysis of the first section of the poem: “People, as well, go about their daily tasks, one man not realizing that “tolling his bell at noon” has caused Napoleon to stop and reminisce” (84).When Sexton tolls the bell, it makes Napoleon to reminds good memories, which is because the bell’s sound has an influence on the man. Also, line ten states that everyone’s argument affects his neighbor to clearly declare that all human’s behavior have effects on other persons. This reality shows that man should be careful about his behavior and everything he does influences other men as they all have one reality. Therefore, if someone does his best, his act shows itself in other men. No one is free of the consequences of others’ deeds. This new identity for everything and especially human shows that man’s reality is that of the whole things in the world. Also, he learns that his identity reveals the influence of everything on the other one in the world. In fact, he will know that if someone does good or bad actions, it will affect other people and if other persons are harmed, in fact he is harmed.
In the second section of the poem (lines 13-36), each of the three sub-passages, relies on an imagistic technique, using a single image to relate a message. It generally reveals that various interrelated parts of nature cannot be separated and that it is not possible to take different actions and beings out of the contexts. It states that everything is worthless out of its background. An object is not beautiful by itself. It needs its surroundings to have beauty and magnificence. The poem, mentions this notion through some examples, a bird, some seashells and a pretty woman.
The first example is about a bird, a sparrow that attracts Emerson’s attention. He brings the bird home. It sings but the sound is not like the time when it was in nature, not as beautiful as that time.
I thought the sparrow’s note from heaven,
Singing at dawn on the alder bough;
I brought him home in his nest at even;
He sings the song, but he cheers not now,
For I did not bring home the river and sky. (All poems 13-17)
Then the speaker understands that the bird is out of its home, its background. Thus, he reflects that as the sparrow “sang to my ear”, the river and sky also “sang to my eye”. He realizes that he cannot appreciate the bird’s sound since its beauty is incorporated into other things, the river and sky which the speaker couldn’t bring home.
As it was stated the poem through some examples shows the interrelation of each thing with the whole background. The second example is that of some “delicate shells” he picks up from the seashore. It should be considered that the traces of the root of Emerson’s understanding of the effect of the particular within the context of the whole goes back to his earlier life as he writes in his journal in 1834 of the memory of gathering some shells from seaside: “I remember when I was a boy going upon the beach and being charmed with the colors and forms of the shells. I picked many up and put them in my pocket. When I got home, I could find nothing that I gathered; nothing, but some dry mussels and snail shells” (qtd. in Wayne, Encyclopedia of Transcendentalism 91). In the poem, the speaker brings the seashells home but they lose their magnificence. He understands that when he picked up the shells, he indeed separated them from “the bubbles of the latest wave” and the “weeds and foam”. Wayne declares that since with the beautiful sights of nature that shape the singing of the bird, it is the surrounding sounds of nature, “the bellowing of the savage sea”, that attract Emerson to the beauty of the shell. The act of picking up the shells is the act of separating them from their natural context, from “the bubbles of the latest wave” and the “weeds and foam”(84).When the speaker takes the shells home, he realizes that they are not the same as the time they were found “bellowing” of the sea. The shells changed to “poor, unsightly, noisome things”. He finds that “their beauty” is left in their place, “on the shore / with the sun, and the sand and the wild uproar” and the beauty of each object is complete only in relation to the other objects.
The final example of the three mentioned examples shows that how nature and beauty change when they are forced into different circumstances, this time through the example of a women. The poem states that the beauty of a woman is because of her virginity: “The lover watched his graceful maid, / As’mid the virgin train she strayed” (29-30), and her beauty is “woven still by the snow-white choir”. But when she is brought to the home and marries a man, “like the bird from the woodlands to the cage”, she loses her attraction and becomes a gentle wife but fairy none. Until the woman is in her context, she is beautiful but when she is taken away from that situation, there is no beauty like the previous conditions. The poem shows that beauty of everything is dependent on other things. Consequently, man knows his new identity as the reality that is present in other things. If man destroys something, he will ruin another thing. How man wants to have a better life without making different objects better? As he knows the entire universe are related to each other.
In some lines (44, 46, 48) nature is illustrated as “around me” and “above me”, “I saw” and “I heard” to show that the speaker understands the beauty through all his senses. In fact, he considers the entire nature and understands the wholeness in the world. He comes to this point that the real beauty is the one that is found in the whole spirit of the world. Everyone that understands this new identity for everything learns that if he wants to achieve something, he should find it in the united essence of the world as it is the real essence of everything.
۳.۲.۱.۳. To Find the Truth through Beauty
Lines thirty seven to thirty nine in stanza five stand apart as a short reflection on growth which is understanding the beauty of everything that is present in the context. The speaker addresses himself and reflects that in his pursuit of the truth, the beauty of every creature is worthless without context and substance. Stanza five states that beauty is not the ultimate purpose but through which man could be able to find the truth of everything. The poem states that appreciating “beauty” without context is a childhood game. The speaker decides to leave his childhood “games” to find the truth of everything as the truth is hidden in the whole context: “Then I said, ‘I covet truth; / Beauty is unripe childhood’s cheat’ / I leave it behind with the games of youth (37- 39). Wayne in his book Encyclopedia of Transcendentalism asserts: “The mature Emerson now considers that appreciating “beauty” alone should not be the foundation of humanity’s relationship to nature. His first response is to dismiss his childhood ‘games’ in favor of the pursuit of truth” (91). It should be considered that if someone is going to perceive beauty, one should understand the whole of the natural phenomena not just a part of it, the whole which is in fact the truth of everything in the world. The poem shows that beauty is the route to the truth that lays in the whole. Each person through experiencing different things should seek a deeper level of understanding. In fact, beauty is the surface and truth is the deep one that the viewer seeks to find behind it. This