Walt Whitman Quotes

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Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman, 1887
Born Walter Whitman
(1819-05-31)May 31, 1819
West Hills, New York, U.S.
Died March 26, 1892(1892-03-26) (aged 72)
Camden, New Jersey, U.S.

To die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.
The whole theory of the universe is directed unerringly to one single individual.
Walt Whitman
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.
Walt Whitman
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.
Walt Whitman
The words of my book nothing, the drift of it everything.
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.
Walt Whitman
Seeing, hearing, feeling, are miracles, and each part and tag of me is a miracle.
Walt Whitman
After you have exhausted what there is in business, politics, conviviality, and so on – have found that none of these finally satisfy, or permanently wear – what remains? Nature remains.
Walt Whitman
We convince by our presence.
Keep your face always toward the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.
Walt Whitman
Behold I do not give lectures or a little charity, When I give I give myself.
Walt Whitman
If you done it, it ain't bragging.
And your very flesh shall be a great poem.
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.
Walt Whitman
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.
Walt Whitman
A great city is that which has the greatest men and women.
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.
Walt Whitman
Keep your face always toward the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.
Walt Whitman
When I give I give myself.
I say that democracy can never prove itself beyond cavil, until it founds and luxuriantly grows its own forms of art, poems, schools, theology, displacing all that exists, or that has been produced anywhere in the past, under opposite influences.
Walt Whitman
All faults may be forgiven of him who has perfect candor.
I may be as bad as the worst, but, thank God, I am as good as the best.
If any thing is sacred, the human body is sacred.
I celebrate myself, and sing myself.
Freedom - to walk free and own no superior.
Every moment of light and dark is a miracle.
I find no sweeter fat than sticks to my own bones.
Other lands have their vitality in a few, a class, but we have it in the bulk of our people.
Walt Whitman
I believe a leaf of grass is no less than the journey-work of the stars.
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.
Walt Whitman
The proof of a poet is that his country absorbs him as affectionately as he has absorbed it.
Walt Whitman
To me, every hour of the day and night is an unspeakably perfect miracle.
Re-examine all that you have been told… dismiss that which insults your soul.
Walt Whitman
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.
Walt Whitman
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?
Walt Whitman
In the confusion we stay with each other, happy to be together, speaking without uttering a single word.
Walt Whitman
Here or henceforward it is all the same to me, I accept Time absolutely.
And there is no trade or employment but the young man following it may become a hero.
Walt Whitman
There is that indescribable freshness and unconsciousness about an illiterate person that humbles and mocks the power of the noblest expressive genius.
Walt Whitman
The real war will never get in the books.
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.
Walt Whitman
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.
Walt Whitman
Give me odorous at sunrise a garden of beautiful flowers where I can walk undisturbed.
Walt Whitman
Whoever degrades another degrades me, And whatever is done or said returns at last to me.
Walt Whitman
Why are there trees I never walk under but large and melodious thoughts descend upon me?
Walt Whitman
Speech is the twin of my vision, it is unequal to measure itself, it provokes me forever, it says sarcastically, Walt you contain enough, why don't you let it out then?
Walt Whitman
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?
Walt Whitman
And whoever walks a furlong without sympathy walks to his own funeral drest in his shroud.
Walt Whitman
There is no object so soft but it makes a hub for the wheeled universe.
There is no week nor day nor hour when tyranny may not enter upon this country, if the people lose their roughness and spirit of defiance.
Walt Whitman
Produce great men, the rest follows.
The beauty of independence, departure, actions that rely on themselves.
The future is no more uncertain than the present.
The art of art, the glory of expression and the sunshine of the light of letters, is simplicity.
Walt Whitman
I am as bad as the worst, but, thank God, I am as good as the best.
The dirtiest book of all is the expurgated book.
Let your soul stand cool and composed before a million universes.
To the real artist in humanity, what are called bad manners are often the most picturesque and significant of all.
Walt Whitman
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?
Walt Whitman
To have great poets, there must be great audiences.
Judging from the main portions of the history of the world, so far, justice is always in jeopardy.
Walt Whitman
The beautiful uncut hair of graves.
I exist as I am, that is enough.
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.
Walt Whitman
Be curious, not judgmental.
I accept reality and dare not question it.
Nothing endures but personal qualities.
Nothing can happen more beautiful than death.
He most honors my style who learns under it to destroy the teacher.
A morning-glory at my window satisfies me more than the metaphysics of books.
Walt Whitman
I see great things in baseball. It's our game - the American game.
The United States themselves are essentially the greatest poem.
I have learned that to be with those I like is enough.
And I will show that nothing can happen more beautiful than death.
Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.
Walt Whitman
Henceforth I ask not good fortune. I myself am good fortune.
Simplicity is the glory of expression.
I no doubt deserved my enemies, but I don't believe I deserved my friends.
Walt Whitman