Famous Walt Whitman Quotes

Walt Whitman quotes reflect a prolific writer famous for quotes and poetry written in free verse style. Walt Whitman's famous phrases serve as a source of thoughtful prose, giving his readers an insight into the character and beliefs of the man and the depth and significance of his words.

Famous Walt Whitman Quotes
Listed below are famous quotes by Whitman that are as applicable today as they were when originally written.

  • "I have learned that to be with those I like is enough."
  • "I exist as I am, that is enough."
  • "When I give, I give myself."
  • "A morning glory at my window satisfies me more than the metaphysics of books."
  • "I no doubt deserved my enemies, but I don't believe I deserved my friends."
  • "Nothing endures but personal qualities."
  • "Other lands have their vitality in a few, a class, but we have it in the bulk of our people."
  • "Produce great men, the rest follows."
  • "Whatever satisfies the soul is truth."
  • "Judging from the main portions of the history of the world, so far, justice is always in jeopardy."
  • "Freedom-to walk free and own no superior."
  • "I accept reality and dare not question it."
  • "Be curious, not judgmental."
  • "The United States themselves are essentially the greatest poem."

Throughout his life, Whitman presented himself as an independent, working class individual with a rough and rowdy attitude when in reality he was a gentle and quiet man with a deep interest in democracy, America and its people, and physical and spiritual awareness of oneself.

His philosophy, style and vision are clearly reflected in his numerous poems and quotes written throughout his significant writing career.

He grew up in a large family and began working at an early age. He received limited formal education but was an avid reader and self-taught himself about the classics, theatre and music. He began a life-long career as a poet and journalist working in the publishing field at magazines and newspapers in New York and becoming the editor of his own paper, The Long Islander, in 1838.

He earned a meager living through his writing and held positions of schoolteacher, clerk for the Department of the Interior and during the Civil War years, worked in Washington, D.C., caring for wounded soldiers.

Seeing the effects of war and the toll taken on the injured soldiers in the hospitals as well as the effects of slavery on society and the people subjected to the inhuman treatment inspired Whitman to write many pieces of poetry.

Through Whitman's writing, he expressed his philosophy of the many issues confronting the country along with a range of emotions from light and hopeful to insightful and thought provoking.

Related Life123 Articles

A Walt Whitman biography offers a focused look on a famed writer, poet and journalist. Whitman was considered controversial for his explicit Leaves of Grass collection, but he remains part of an elite group of poets influencing today's writers.

Walt Whitman the poet, whose writings reflected his philosophy regarding war, politics, sexuality, race, slavery, physical and spiritual states and democracy, became a spokesman of the written word for not only those citizens with a non-conformist attitude but also those treated unjustly.

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