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John William Tuohy lives in Washington DC

Quotes from Walt Whitman - Leaves of Grass

I've always enjoyed an occasional dose of Whitman to put my life in perspective. Do you know Whitman? Here's a sample. A Whitman sampler ! Ha!  



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



Give me the splendid, silent sun with all his beams full-dazzling. 


Peace is always beautiful.



I swear to you there are divine things more beautiful than words can tell.


I will sleep no more but arise, You oceans that have been calm within me! how I feel you, fathomless, stirring, preparing unprecedented waves and storms.


On the Meaning of life:
 Answer.
That you are here—that life exists and identity,
That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.


Has anyone supposed it lucky to be born?
I hasten to inform him or her it is just as lucky to die, and I know it.


I hear you are whispering there
O stars of heaven,
O suns—O grass of graves…
If you do not say anything how can I say anything?


I am for you, and you are for me, not only for our own sake, but for others’ sakes.


Loafe with me on the grass, loose the stop from
your throat,
Not words, not music or rhyme I want—not cus-
tom or lecture, not even the best,
Only the lull I like, the hum of your valved voice.
I mind how we lay in June, such a transparent
summer morning,
You settled your head athwart my hips, and gently
turned over upon me,
And parted the shirt from my bosom-bone, and
plunged your tongue to my bare-stript heart


And we affect each other without ever seeing each other, and never perhaps to see each 
other, is every bit as wonderful



We were together. I forget the rest.



Oh me! Oh life! of the questions of these recurring,
Of the endless trains of the faithless, of cities fill’d with the foolish,
Of myself forever reproaching myself, (for who more foolish than I, and who more faithless?)
Of eyes that vainly crave the light, of the objects mean, of the struggle ever renew’d,
Of the poor results of all, of the plodding and sordid crowds I see around me,
Of the empty and useless years of the rest, with the rest me intertwined,
The question, O me! so sad, recurring—What good amid these, O me, O life?
Answer.
That you are here—that life exists and identity,
That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.


I resist anything better than my own diversity,
Breathe the air but leave plenty after me,
And am not stuck up, and am in my place.



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. 


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