Quotes

Quotes from Leaves of Grass

I celebrate myself, and sing myself.

Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself.

I am large, I contain multitudes.

I believe a leaf of grass is no less than the journey-work of the stars.

Now I see the secret of making the best persons, it is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the earth.

The beautiful uncut hair of graves.

The wild gander leads his flock through the cool night.

I lean and loaf at my ease.

I am the poet of the body.

I am the poet of the woman the same as the man.

I bequeath myself to the dirt to grow from the grass I love.

I am of old and young, of the foolish as much as the wise.

I am of those that farthest go inland and farthest inland come back.

To have great poets, there must be great audiences too.

This is the city and I am one of the citizens.

I swear I will never speculate again in any state where there are laws for gambling.

I swear to you, there are divine things more beautiful than words can tell.

The smoke of my own breath, Echoes, ripples, and buzz’d whispers, loveroot, silkthread, crotch and vine.

Loafe with me on the grass, loose the stop from your throat.

Walt Whitman, a kosmos, of Manhattan the son.

Resist much, obey little.

I will sleep no more but arise!

I do not ask the wounded person how he feels, I myself become the wounded person.

I dote on myself, there is that lot of me and all so luscious.

To die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.

You cannot have a good song if the voices do not seriously combine.

We consider bibles and religions divine — I do not say they are not divine.

There is no greater heaven than the heart of a loving mother.

The spotted hawk swoops by and accuses me, he complains of my gab and my loitering.

I sound my barbaric yawp over the roofs of the world.

Sure as the most certain sure, plumb in the uprights.

I and this mystery, standing here we stand.

The press of my foot to the earth springs a hundred affections.

The scent of these arm-pits aroma finer than prayer.

Divine am I inside and out, and I make holy whatever I touch or am touched from.

If you want me again look for me under your bootsoles.

If I worship one thing more than another it shall be the spread of my own body.

For I see you, you splash in the water there, yet stay stock still in your room.

I visit the orchards of spheres and look at the product.

You must not know too much or be too precise or scientific about birds and trees and flowers and watercraft.

The narrowest hinge in my hand puts to scorn all machinery.

I will sleep no more but arise!

I pass death with the dying and birth with the new-washed babe.

I too am not a bit tamed.

Long have you timidly waded holding a plank by the shore.

Swiftly arose and spread around me the peace and knowledge that pass all the argument of the earth.

The last scud of day holds back for me, It flings my likeness after the rest and true as any on the shadow’d wilds.

Myself moving forward then and now and forever, gathering and showing more always and with velocity.

Contact! they yelled, contact! I felt the blow to my side with childish jabs.

And what do you think has become of the women and children?


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