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I won't take my religion from any man who never ...
by Carl Sandburg

I won't take my religion from any man who never works except with his mouth.
- Carl Sandburg

Life is like an onion:
you peel it off one layer at a time,
and sometimes you weep.
- Carl Sandburg

Nothing happens unless first a dream.
- Carl Sandburg

THE fog comes
on little cat feet.
It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.
- Carl Sandburg

 

Poetry is the synthesis of hyacinths and biscuits.
- Carl Sandburg

Time is the coin of your life.
It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent.
Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.
- Carl Sandburg

Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance.
- Carl Sandburg

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Let the gentle bush dig its root deep and spread upward to split the boulder.
- Carl Sandburg

To be a good loser is to learn how to win.
- Carl Sandburg

Poetry is the opening and closing of a door,
leaving those who look through to guess about what
is seen during the moment.
- Carl Sandburg

In these times you have to be an optimist to open your
eyes when you awake in the morning.
- Carl Sandburg

Sometime they'll give a war and nobody will come.
- Carl Sandburg

The sea speaks a language polite people never repeat.
It is a colossal scavenger slang and has no respect.
- Carl Sandburg

We read Robert Browning's poetry.
Here we needed no guidance from the professor:
the poems themselves were enough.
- Carl Sandburg

Where was I going? I puzzled and wondered about it
til I actually enjoyed the puzzlement and wondering.
- Carl Sandburg

Often I look back and see that I had been many kinds
of a fool-and that I had been happy in being this or that kind of fool.
- Carl Sandburg

When I was writing pretty poor poetry,
this girl with midnight black hair told me to go on.
- Carl Sandburg

Nearly all the best things that came to me in life have been unexpected,
unplanned by me.
- Carl Sandburg

A baby is God's opinion that life should go on.
- Carl Sandburg

Strange things blow in through my window on the wings
of the night wind and I don't worry about my destiny.
- Carl Sandburg

There was always the consolation that if I didn't like
what I wrote I could throw it away or burn it.
- Carl Sandburg

There is an eagle in me that wants to soar,
and there is a hippopotamus in me that wants to wallow in the mud.
- Carl Sandburg

Slang is a language that rolls up its sleeves,
spits on its hands and goes to work.
- Carl Sandburg

A man may be born, but in order to be born he must first die,
and in order to die he must first awake.
- Carl Sandburg

I am an idealist.
I don't know where I'm going but I'm on my way.
- Carl Sandburg

All human actions are equivalent...
and all are on principle doomed to failure.
- Carl Sandburg

I never made a mistake in grammar but one in my life
and as soon as I done it I seen it.
- Carl Sandburg

There are 10 men in me and I do not know or understand one of them.
- Carl Sandburg

I had been keeping an off eye on the advertising field,
thinking I might become an idea man and a copywriter.
- Carl Sandburg

Let a joy keep you.
Reach out your hands and take it when it runs by.
- Carl Sandburg

I have become infected, now that I see how beautifully
a book is coming out of all this.
- Carl Sandburg

One of the greatest necessities in America is to discover creative solitude.
- Carl Sandburg

All politicians should have 3 hats -
one to throw into the ring,
one to talk through, and one to pull rabbits out of if elected.
- Carl Sandburg

I doubt if you can have a truly wild party without liquor.
- Carl Sandburg

Here is the difference between Dante,
Milton, and me.
They wrote about hell and never saw the place.
I wrote about Chicago after looking the town over for years and years.
- Carl Sandburg

Back of every mistaken venture and defeat is the laughter of wisdom,
if you listen.
- Carl Sandburg

Calling it off comes easy enough if you haven't told
the girl you are smitten with her.
- Carl Sandburg

I fell in love, not deep, but I fell several times and then fell out.
- Carl Sandburg

I learned you can't trust the judgment of good friends.
- Carl Sandburg

To work hard, to live hard, to die hard,
and then go to hell after all would be too damn hard.
- Carl Sandburg

My room for books and study or for sitting and thinking
about nothing in particular to see what would happen
was at the end of a hall.
- Carl Sandburg

Every blunder behind us is giving a cheer for us,
and only for those who were willing to fail are the
dangers and splendors of life.
- Carl Sandburg

Shame is the feeling you have when you agree with the
woman who loves you that you are the man she thinks you are.
- Carl Sandburg

I can remember only a few of the strange and curious
words now dead but living and spoken by the English
people a thousand years ago.
- Carl Sandburg

I have in later years taken to Euclid,
Whitehead, Bertrand Russell, in an elemental way.
- Carl Sandburg

The secret of happiness is to admire without desiring.
- Carl Sandburg

Anger is the most impotent of passions.
It effects nothing it goes about, and hurts the one
who is possessed by it more than the one against whom it is directed.
- Carl Sandburg

Love your neighbor as yourself; but don't take down the fence.
- Carl Sandburg

I make it clear why I write as I do and why other poets write as they do.
After hundreds of experiments I decided to go my own
way in style and see what would happen.
- Carl Sandburg

I took to wearing a black tie known as the Ascot,
with long drooping ends.
I had seen pictures of painters, sculptors,
poets, wearing this style of tie.
- Carl Sandburg

I've written some poetry I don't understand myself.
- Carl Sandburg

I knew I would read all kinds of books and try to get
at what it is that makes good writers good.
But I made no promises that I would write books a lot
of people would like to read.
- Carl Sandburg

I'm either going to be a writer or a bum.
- Carl Sandburg

When a nation goes down, or a society perishes,
one condition may always be found; they forgot where they came from.
They lost sight of what had brought them along.
- Carl Sandburg

Poetry is a phantom script telling how rainbows are
made and why they go away.
- Carl Sandburg

A book is never a masterpiece: it becomes one.
Genius is the talent of a dead man.
- Carl Sandburg

I couldn't see myself filling some definite niche in what is called a career.
This was all misty.
- Carl Sandburg

The scholars and poets of an earlier time can be read
only with a dictionary to help.
- Carl Sandburg

The greatest cunning is to have none at all.
- Carl Sandburg

The moon is a friend for the lonesome to talk to.
- Carl Sandburg

We don't have to think up a title till we get the doggone book written.
- Carl Sandburg

I decided I would go to Chicago and try my luck as
a writer after those eight months as a fireman.
- Carl Sandburg

Ordering a man to write a poem is like commanding a
pregnant woman to give birth to a red-headed child.
- Carl Sandburg

We had two grand antique professors who had been teaching
at Lombard since before I was born.
- Carl Sandburg

I have often wondered what it is an old building can
do to you when you happen to know a little about things
that went on long ago in that building.
- Carl Sandburg

You remember some bedrooms you have slept in.
There are bedrooms you like to remember and others
you would like to forget.
- Carl Sandburg

There have been as many varieties of socialists as
there are wild birds that fly in the woods and sometimes
go up and on through the clouds.
- Carl Sandburg

Poetry is the journal of the sea animal living on land,
wanting to fly in the air.
Poetry is a search for syllables to shoot at the barriers
of the unknown and the unknowable.
Poetry is a phantom script telling how rainbows are
made and why they go away.
- Carl Sandburg

Valor is a gift.
Those having it never know for sure whether they have it till the test comes.
And those having it in one test never know for sure
if they will have it when the next test comes.
- Carl Sandburg

I stayed away from mathematics not so much because
I knew it would be hard work as because of the amount
of time I knew it would take,
hours spent in a field where I was not a natural.
- Carl Sandburg

I tell you the past is a bucket of ashes,
so live not in your yesterdays, no just for tomorrow,
but in the here and now.
Keep moving and forget the post mortems;
and remember,
no one can get the jump on the future.
- Carl Sandburg


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