Walt Whitman Quotes on Life – Lessons on Curiosity & Joy

These Walt Whitman quotes encourage more inspired thinking and embracing life to its fullest. 

Walt Whitman (1819 – 1892) was an American poet, essayist, and journalist who is regarded as one of the most significant writers in America.

What did Walt Whitman believe in?

Whitman believed in the United States of America and what it stood for. He wrote sometimes controversial poems, some of which were published in his book “Leaves of Grass” in 1855.

He is known for his free-verse poetry and his use of imagery in his works.

Whitman spoke about free thinking, democracy, freedom from oppressive religions, making the most of life, nature, happiness and equality.

Here are the best and most famous Walt Whitman quotes and sayings:


Walt Whitman Quotes About Life


“These are the days that must happen to you.” Walt Whitman


“Re-examine all you have been told. Dismiss what insults your soul.” Walt Whitman


“Either define the moment or the moment will define you.” Walt Whitman


“Be curious, not judgmental.” Walt Whitman


“I am as bad as the worst, but thank God, I am as good as the best.” Walt Whitman


“I exist as I am, that is enough.” Walt Whitman


“Resist much, obey little.” Walt Whitman


“Have you learned the lessons only of those who admired you, and were tender with you, and stood aside for you? Have you not learned great lessons from those who braced themselves against you, and disputed passage with you?” Walt Whitman


“The future is no more uncertain than the present.” Walt Whitman


“Let your soul stand cool and composed before a million universes.” Walt Whitman


“The truth is simple. If it was complicated, everyone would understand it.” Walt Whitman


“I no doubt deserved my enemies, but I don’t believe I deserved my friends.” Walt Whitman


“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


“To have great poets, there must be great audiences.” Walt Whitman


“When one reaches out to help another he touches the face of God.” Walt Whitman


“All faults may be forgiven of him who has perfect candor.” Walt Whitman


“Henceforth I ask not good fortune. I myself am good fortune.” Walt Whitman


“Simplicity is the glory of expression.” Walt Whitman


“Whatever satisfies the soul is truth.” Walt Whitman


“I am large, I contain multitudes.” Walt Whitman


“Not I, nor anyone else can travel that road for you. You must travel it by yourself. It is not far. It is within reach. Perhaps you have been on it since you were born and did not know. Perhaps it is everywhere – on water and land.” Walt Whitman


“This is what you shall do; Love the earth and sun and the 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 hat 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 its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body.” Walt Whitman



Walt Whitman Happiness Quotes


“Keep your face always toward the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.” Walt Whitman


“I have learned that to be with those I like is enough.” Walt Whitman


“Happiness, not in another place but this place…not for another hour, but this hour.” Walt Whitman


“We were together. I forget the rest.” Walt Whitman


To me, every hour of the day and night is an unspeakably perfect miracle. Walt Whitman


“Do anything, but let it produce joy.” Walt Whitman


I celebrate myself, and sing myself. Walt Whitman


Walt Whitman Nature Quotes

“Peace is always beautiful.” Walt Whitman


“I believe a leaf of grass is no less than the journeywork of the stars.” Walt Whitman


“A morning-glory at my window satisfies me more than the metaphysics of books.” Walt Whitman


“Every moment of light and dark is a miracle.” Walt Whitman


“The earth is rude, silent, incomprehensible at first; Be not discouraged – keep on – there are divine things, well envelop’d; I swear to you there are divine things more beautiful than words can tell.” Walt Whitman


“Why are there trees I never walk under, but large and melodious thoughts descend upon me?” Walt Whitman


“Give me odorous at sunrise a garden of beautiful flowers where I can walk undisturbed.” Walt Whitman


“Now I see the secret of making the best person: it is to grow in the open air and to eat and sleep with the earth.” Walt Whitman


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