Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Words to live by

"This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hate to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in it's words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion or joint of your body" -- Walt Whitman

1 comment:

geoff said...

Though I quite like some of Whitman's poetry, I have a facsimile of the 1st edition (1855) of Leaves of Grass on the bookshelf just above my desk, I can't also forget he was a great fan of one of the USAs early imperialistic wars i.e. the 1846-48 Mexican War and in effect a cheerleader for what amounted to "regime change" at the time:

" Whitman proposed the stationing of sixty thousand U.S. troops in Mexico in order to establish a regime change there, stating, “whose efficiency and permanency shall be guaranteed by the United States. This will bring out enterprise, open the way for manufacturers and commerce, into which the immense dead capital of the country will find its way.”