Daily Dojo

This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to everyone 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—re-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, and 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.

Today’s quote comes from Walt Whitman‘s 1855 preface to Leaves of Grass.

This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to everyone 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—re-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, and 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

The entire preface is worth reading, as is the entire body of Whitman’s work.

2 thoughts on “Daily Dojo

  1. Walt Whitman was a marxist and antithetical to american norms and virtues. Love your musical musings and videos, but please lose the political tangent you seem to embrace.

  2. Whitman was a Marxist? Whitman and Marx were contemporaries, but Marx didn’t even begin to become internationally famous until about 1871. Whitman was in his 50s and had written the greatest body of his work by then. I think it’s weird to argue that arguably America’s greatest poet was antithetical to American norms and virtues. He’s one of the definers of American norms and virtues. I love what you’re doing Pat. Keep quoting Whitman.

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