Why are there trees I never walk under but large and melodious thoughts descend upon me?
— Walt Whitman
In the confusion we stay with each other, happy to be together, speaking without uttering a single word.
Simplicity is the glory of expression.
Behold I do not give lectures or a little charity, When I give I give myself.
If any thing is sacred, the human body is sacred.
I find no sweeter fat than sticks to my own bones.
Have you heard that it was good to gain the day? I also say it is good to fall, battles are lost in the same spirit in which they are won.
Produce great men, the rest follows.
Oh while I live, to be the ruler of life, not a slave, to meet life as a powerful conqueror, and nothing exterior to me will ever take command of me.
A great city is that which has the greatest men and women.
The beautiful uncut hair of graves.
I cannot be awake for nothing looks to me as it did before, Or else I am awake for the first time, and all before has been a mean sleep.
O public road, I say back I am not afraid to leave you, yet I love you, you express me better than I can express myself.
The art of art, the glory of expression and the sunshine of the light of letters, is simplicity.
The genius of the United States is not best or most in its executives or legislatures, nor in its ambassadors or authors or colleges, or churches, or parlors, nor even in its newspapers or inventors, but always most in the common people.
The shallow consider liberty a release from all law, from every constraint. The wise man sees in it, on the contrary, the potent Law of Laws.
Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.
And I will show that nothing can happen more beautiful than death.
Whoever degrades another degrades me, And whatever is done or said returns at last to me.
The real war will never get in the books.
Nothing can happen more beautiful than death.
I celebrate myself, and sing myself.
And whoever walks a furlong without sympathy walks to his own funeral drest in his shroud.
Have you learned the lessons only of those who admired you, and were tender with you, and stood aside for you? Have you not learned great lessons from those who braced themselves against you, and disputed passage with you?
Henceforth I ask not good fortune. I myself am good fortune.
Other lands have their vitality in a few, a class, but we have it in the bulk of our people.
Nothing endures but personal qualities.
The words of my book nothing, the drift of it everything.
I say to mankind, Be not curious about God. For I, who am curious about each, am not curious about God - I hear and behold God in every object, yet understand God not in the least.
There is no object so soft but it makes a hub for the wheeled universe.
And there is no trade or employment but the young man following it may become a hero.
Whatever satisfies the soul is truth.
Now I see the secret of making the best person: it is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the earth.
To have great poets, there must be great audiences.
Stranger, if you passing meet me and desire to speak to me, why should you not speak to me? And why should I not speak to you?
Let your soul stand cool and composed before a million universes.
The United States themselves are essentially the greatest poem.
Here or henceforward it is all the same to me, I accept Time absolutely.
The dirtiest book of all is the expurgated book.
To the real artist in humanity, what are called bad manners are often the most picturesque and significant of all.
Viewed freely, the English language is the accretion and growth of every dialect, race, and range of time, and is both the free and compacted composition of all.
To die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.
The great city is that which has the greatest man or woman: if it be a few ragged huts, it is still the greatest city in the whole world.
Let that which stood in front go behind, let that which was behind advance to the front, let bigots, fools, unclean persons, offer new propositions, let the old propositions be postponed.
There is that indescribable freshness and unconsciousness about an illiterate person that humbles and mocks the power of the noblest expressive genius.
I heard what was said of the universe, heard it and heard it of several thousand years; it is middling well as far as it goes - but is that all?
He most honors my style who learns under it to destroy the teacher.
I accept reality and dare not question it.
When I give I give myself.
To me, every hour of the day and night is an unspeakably perfect miracle.