Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Henry Wadsworth

American Poet, Translator

Author Quotes

The life of a man consists not in seeing visions and in dreaming dreams, but in active charity and in willing service.

The bravest are the tenderest; the loving are the daring.

Sorrow and silence are strong and patient, endurance is God-like.

No man is so poor as to have nothing worth giving. Give what you have. To someone, it may be better than you dare to think.

If we could read the secret history of our enemies, we would find in each man's life a sorrow and a suffering enough to disarm all hostility.

Man must have something higher than himself to think of.

He that respects himself is safe from others. He wears a coat of mail that none can pierce.

A torn jacket is soon mended; but hard words bruise the heart of a child.

There is no Death! What seems so is transition.

We see dimly through the mists and vapors; amid these earthly damps what seem to us but sad, funeral tapers may be heaven’s distant lamps. There is no Death! What seems so is transition; this life of mortal breath is but a suburb of the life Elysian, whose portal we call Death.

The lowest ebb is the turn of the tide.

The little I have seen of the world… teaches me to look upon the errors of others with sorrow, not in anger.

Tell me not in mournful numbers, life is but an empty dream! For the soul is dead that slumbers, and things are not what they seem. Life is real! Life is earnest! And the grave is not its goal; dust thou art, to dust returneth, was not spoken of the soul. Not enjoyment, and not sorrow is our destined end or way; but to act, that each to-morrow find us farther than today... Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant! Let the dead Past bury its dead! Act - act in the living Present! Hear within, and God o’erhead. Lives of great men all remind us we can make our lives sublime, and, departing, leave behind us footprints in the sands of time... Let us then, be up and doing, with a heart for any fate; still achieving, still pursuing, learn to labor and to wait.

The grave itself is but a covered bridge, leading from light to light, through a brief darkness!

Not in the clamor of the crowded street, not in the shouts and plaudits of the throng, but in ourselves are triumph and defeat.

Talk not of wasted affection; affection never was wasted.

Music is the Prophet’s art.

Nature is a revelation of God; Art is a revelation of man.

If we could read the secret history of our enemies, we should find in each man’s life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.

How far the unknown transcends the what we know.

If spring came but once in a century instead of once a year, or burst forth with the sound of an earthquake and not in silence, what wonder and expectation there would be in all hearts to behold the miraculous change.

For age is opportunity no less than youth itself, though in another dress, And as the evening twilight fades away the sky is filled with stars, invisible by day.

Enthusiasm begets enthusiasm.

Be noble in every thought and every deed.

Dreams or illusions, call them what you will. They lift us from the commonplace life to better things.

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Henry Wadsworth
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American Poet, Translator