Of course, another wonderful gay poet, Mark Doty, took note of this.
"In the first Leaves of Grass he introduced two ingredients thus far unknown to American poetry, at least as directly and significantly as they appeared in Whitman: sex and jobs. The first was inspired by Emerson and the transcendentalists, who said that all nature was an emblem of spirit, or God. If so, why not celebrate sex, which was a part of nature? The second was the American pastime for work. The work of the average: the lawyer, the laborer, the seamstress, the mother, the brother, the sister, even the Irish prostitute. Whitman celebrates what he calls 'the Divine Average' -- probably the most wonderful oxymoron democracy ever produced. ... The poet reasoned that if -- according to transcendentalist doctrine -- everyone was divine because nature was emblematic of God, then all were equal, politically equal, including women, whom Whitman treated equally with men...This idea of equality and self-divinity also meant that one could celebrate himself or herself. And so the first poem of the first edition of Leaves of Grass began: 'I celebrate myself [and sing myself] / And what I assume you shall assume, / For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.'"