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Quotations From WALT WHITMAN

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  • 11.
    The United States themselves are essentially the greatest poem.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Leaves of Grass, preface (1855).

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  • 12.
    The art of art, the glory of expression and the sunshine of the light of letters, is simplicity.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Leaves of Grass, preface (1855).

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  • 13.
    And whoever walks a furlong without sympathy walks to his own funeral drest in his shroud.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. "Song of Myself," sct. 48, Leaves of Grass (1855).

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  • 14.
    To the real artist in humanity, what are called bad manners are often the most picturesque and significant of all.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. "Emerson's Books," Notes Left Over (1881).
  • 15.
    I see her close beside me with silent lips sad and tremulous.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Once I Pass'd through a Populous City (l. 7). . . The Complete Poems [Walt Whitman]. Francis Murphy, ed. (1975; repr. 1986) Penguin Books.

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  • 16.
    To have great poets, there must be great audiences too.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. "Ventures on an Old Theme," Notes Left Over (1881). This motto adorned the front of Poetry magazine and was the object of the vitriolic disapproval of Ezra Pound, who, in 1914, wrote in the pages of the magazine: "The artist is not dependent on the multitude of his listeners.... This rabble, this multitude—does not create the great artist. They are aimless and drifting without him." See also Ezra Pound's remark under "the arts."
  • 17.
    I never see that man without feeling that he is one to become personally attach'd to, for his combination of purest, heartiest tenderness, and native western form of manliness.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. "The Inauguration," March 4, 1865, Specimen Days and Collect (1882).
  • 18.
    And there is no trade or employment but the young man following it may become a hero.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Song of Myself, sect. 48, Leaves of Grass (1855).

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  • 19.
    The proof of a poet is that his country absorbs him as affectionately as he has absorbed it.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Leaves of Grass, preface (1855).
  • 20.
    I am for those who believe in loose delights, I share the midnight orgies of young men,
    I dance with the dancers and drink with the drinkers.
    Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Native Moments.

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