Filmmaker: Jim Haverkamp

When Walt Whitman Was a Little Girl by M.C. Biegner

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

A gently surreal, subversive and affecting film by Jim Haverkamp, with narration adapted and lightly condensed from a prose poem by M.C. Biegner. Here’s how Haverkamp describes it on the front page of his website:

Not your typical History Channel biography, When Walt Whitman Was a Little Girl tells the startling, unuttered truth about America’s good gray poet. Starting out as an ordinary nine year old girl, Walt is soon catapulted into the world with her senses ablaze.

Based on a prose poem by M.C. Biegner, the film mixes drama, dance, puppetry, and oddball humor to portray the world through the eyes of a ‘sensitive kid.’ Walt awakens to the mysteries and wonder of nature, leaves her home to seek fame and adventure, is plunged into the horror of war, and finally begins to understand the unspoken poetry of childhood.

In addition to winning a raft of film festival awards, it was featured in the Summer/Fall 2013 issue of TriQuarterly.