Treasure Island

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

(27 February 1807 – 24 March 1882 / Portland, Maine)

Quotations

  • ''We judge ourselves by what we feel capable of doing, while others judge us by what we have already done.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), U.S. poet. Kavanagh, bk. 1, ch. 1 (1849).
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  • ''Art is the child of Nature; yes,
    Her darling child, in whom we trace
    The features of the mother's face,
    Her aspect and her attitude.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), U.S. poet. "Keramos."
  • ''half-way up the hill, I see the Past
    Lying beneath me with its sounds and sights,—
    A city in the twilight dim and vast,
    With smoking roofs, soft bells, and gleaming lights,—
    And hear above me on the autumnal blast
    The cataract of Death far thundering from the heights.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1809-1882), U.S. poet. Mezzo Cammin (l. 9-14). . . Norton Anthology of Poetry, The. Alexander W. Allison and others, eds. (3d ed., 1983) W. W. Norton & Company.
  • ''Half of my life is gone, and I have let
    The years slip from me and have not fulfilled
    The aspiration of my youth, to build
    Some tower of song with lofty parapet.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1809-1882), U.S. poet. Mezzo Cammin (l. 1-4). . . Norton Anthology of Poetry, The. Alexander W. Allison and others, eds. (3d ed., 1983) W. W. Norton & Company.
  • ''Ah, to build, to build!
    That is the noblest art of all the arts.
    Painting and sculpture are but images,
    Are merely shadows cast by outward things
    On stone or canvas, having in themselves
    No separate existence. Architecture,
    Existing in itself, and not in seeming
    A something it is not, surpasses them
    As substance shadow.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), U.S. poet. Michael Angelo.
  • ''So in majestic cadence rise and fall
    The mighty undulations of thy song,
    O sightless bard, England's Monides!
    And ever and anon, high over all
    Uplifted, a ninth wave superb and strong,
    Floods all the soul with its melodious seas.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1809-1882), U.S. poet. Milton (l. 9-14). . . Norton Anthology of Poetry, The. Alexander W. Allison and others, eds. (3d ed., 1983) W. W. Norton & Company.
  • ''Whatever poet, orator, or sage
    May say of it, old age is still old age.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), U.S. poet. Morituri Salutamus.
  • ''Age is opportunity no less
    Than youth itself, though in another dress,
    And as the evening twilight fades away
    The sky is filled with stars, invisible by day.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), U.S. poet. Morituri Salutamus, st. 24 (1875).
  • ''The love of learning, the sequestered nooks,
    And all the sweet serenity of books.''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), U.S. poet. Morituri Salutamus, st. 21 (1875).
  • ''Often I think of the beautiful town
    That is seated by the sea;''
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1809-1882), U.S. poet. My Lost Youth (l. 1-2). . . Oxford Book of American Verse, The. F. O. Matthiessen, ed. (1950) Oxford University Press.

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Memories

Oft I remember those I have known
In other days, to whom my heart was lead
As by a magnet, and who are not dead,
But absent, and their memories overgrown
With other thoughts and troubles of my own,
As graves with grasses are, and at their head
The stone with moss and lichens so o'er spread,
Nothing is legible but the name alone.
And is it so with them? After long years.

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