The process of reading is not a half sleep, but in the highest sense, an exercise, a gymnast’s struggle: that the reader is to do something for him or herself, must be on the alert, just construct indeed the poem, argument, history, metaphysical essay–the text furnishing the hints, the clue, the start, the framework.
I think I could turn and live with the animals, they are so placid and self contained; I stand and look at them long and long. They do not sweat and whine about their condition; They do not lie awake in the dark and weep for their sins; They do not make me sick discussing their duty to God; Not one is dissatisfied-not one is demented with the mania of owning things; Not one kneels to another, nor his kind that lived thousands of years ago; Not one is responsible or industrious over the whole earth.
A morning-glory at my window satisfies me more than the metaphysics of books.
Over all the sky – the sky! Far, far out of reach, studded with eternal stars.
Earth, that hast no voice, confide to me a voice!
O harvest of my lands! O boundless summer growths!
O lavish, brown, parturient earth! O infinite, teeming womb!
A verse to seek, to see, to narrate thee.
The earth does not argue, Is not pathetic, has no arrangements, Does not scream, haste, persuade, threaten, promise, Makes no discrimination, has no conceivable failures, Closes nothing, refuses nothing, shuts none out.
this is thy hour o soul, thy free flight into the wordless, away from books, away from art, the day erased, the lesson done, thee fully forth emerging, silent, gazing, pondering the themes thou lovest best, night, sleep, death and the stars.
You must not know too much or be too precise or scientific about birds and trees and flowers and watercraft; a certain free-margin , or even vagueness – ignorance, credulity – helps your enjoyment of these things.
I know I am deathless. No doubt I have died myself ten thousand times before. I laugh at what you call dissolution, and I know the amplitude of time.
To drive free, to love free, to court destruction with taunts, to feed the remainder of life with one hour of fullness and freedom – one brief hour of madness and joy.
I find no sweeter fat than sticks to my own bones.
I have learned that to be with those I like is enough.
Whoever degrades another degrades me, And whatever is done or said returns at last to me.
I do not ask the wounded person how he feels, I myself become the wounded person.
captain! My Captain! Our fearful trip is done. The ship has weather’d every wrack The prize we sought is won The port is near, the bells I hear The people all exulting While follow eyes, the steady keel The vessel grim and daring But Heart! Heart! Heart! O the bleeding drops of red Where on the deck my captain lies Fallen cold and dead.
To me, every hour of the light and dark is a miracle. Every cubic inch of space is a miracle.
Wisdom is not finally tested by the schools, Wisdom cannot be pass’d from one having it to another not having it, Wisdom is of the soul, is not susceptible of proof, is its own proof.
What is that you express in your eyes? It seems to me more than all the print I have read in my life.