Walt Whitman Quotes

There is that indescribable freshness and unconsciousness about an illiterate person that humbles and mocks the power of the noblest expressive genius.
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Leaves of Grass, preface (1855).
(39) (15)
An old man bending I come among new faces, Years looking backward resuming in answer to children, Come tell us old man,
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. The Wound-Dresser (l. 1-3). . . The Complete Poems [Walt Whitman]. Francis Murphy, ed. (1975; repr. 1986) Penguin Books.
(3) (2)
The United States themselves are essentially the greatest poem.
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Leaves of Grass, preface (1855).
(41) (15)
Bearing the bandages, water and sponge, Straight and swift to my wounded I go, Where they lie on the ground after the battle brought in, Where their priceless blood reddens the grass the ground, Or to the rows of the hospital tent, or under the roof'd hospital, To the long rows of cots up and down each side I return, To each and all one after another I draw near, not one do I miss, An attendant follows holding a tray, he carries a refuse pail, Soon to be fill'd with clotted rags and blood, emptied, and fill'd again.
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. The Wound-Dresser (l. 25-33). . . The Complete Poems [Walt Whitman]. Francis Murphy, ed. (1975; repr. 1986) Penguin Books.
(2) (1)
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 (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Leaves of Grass, preface (1855).
(6) (2)
What chemistry! That the winds are really not infectious, That this is no cheat, this transparent green-wash of the sea which is so amorous after me, That it is safe to allow it to lick my naked body all over with its tongues, That it will not endanger me with the fevers that have deposited themselves in it, That all is clean forever and forever,
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. This Compost (l. 31-36). . . The Complete Poems [Walt Whitman]. Francis Murphy, ed. (1975; repr. 1986) Penguin Books.
(4) (1)
As soon as histories are properly told there is no more need of romances.
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Leaves of Grass, preface (1855).
(35) (14)
Now I am terrified at the Earth, it is that calm and patient, It grows such sweet things out of such corruptions, It turns harmless and stainless on its axis, with such endless successions of diseas'd corpses, It distills such exquisite winds out of such infused fetor, It renews with such unwitting looks its prodigal, annual, sumptuous crops, It gives such divine materials to men, and accepts such leavings from them at last.
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. This Compost (l. 42-47). . . The Complete Poems [Walt Whitman]. Francis Murphy, ed. (1975; repr. 1986) Penguin Books.
(5) (1)
In the faces of men and women I see God, and in my own face in the glass, I find letters from God dropt in the street, and every one is sign'd by God's name. And I leave them where they are, for I know that wheresoe'er I go, Others will punctually come for ever and ever.
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. Leaves of Grass (1855), sct. 48.
(8) (2)
Something startles me where I thought I was safest, I withdraw from the still woods I loved,
Walt Whitman (1819-1892), U.S. poet. This Compost (l. 1-2). . . The Complete Poems [Walt Whitman]. Francis Murphy, ed. (1975; repr. 1986) Penguin Books.
(6) (1)