Famous Quotes By Carl Sandburg


  1. A baby is God's opinion that life should go on.
  2. All human actions are equivalent... and all are on principle doomed to failure.
  3. 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.
  4. Back of every mistaken venture and defeat is the laughter of wisdom, if you listen.
  5. I doubt if you can have a truly wild party without liquor.
  6. I have always felt that a woman has the right to treat the subject of her age with ambiguity until, perhaps, she passes into the realm of over ninety. Then it is better she be candid with herself and with the world.
  7. I learned you can't trust the judgment of good friends.
  8. 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.
  9. 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.
  10. I won't take my religion from any man who never works except with his mouth.
  11. I'm an idealist. I don't know where I'm going, but I'm on my way.
  12. In these times you have to be an optimist to open your eyes when you awake in the morning.
  13. I've written some poetry I don't understand myself.
  14. Let the gentle bush dig its root deep and spread upward to split the boulder.
  15. Life is like an onion. You peel it off one layer at a time, and sometimes you weep.
  16. Nearly all the best things that came to me in life have been unexpected, unplanned by me.
  17. Poetry is a phantom script telling how rainbows are made and why they go away.
  18. Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance.
  19. Poetry is the opening and closing of a door, leaving those who look through to guess about what is seen during the moment.
  20. Poetry is the synthesis of hyacinths and biscuits.
  21. Slang is a language that rolls up its sleeves, spits on its hands and goes to work.
  22. Sometime they'll give a war and nobody will come.
  23. The sea speaks a language polite people never repeat. It is a colossal scavenger slang and has no respect.
  24. The secret of happiness is to admire without desiring.
  25. 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.
  26. To be a good loser is to learn how to win.
  27. To work hard, to live hard, to die hard, and then go to hell after all would be too damn hard.
  28. We read Robert Browning's poetry. Here we needed no guidance from the professor: the poems themselves were enough.
  29. 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.
  30. When I was writing pretty poor poetry, this girl with midnight black hair told me to go on.

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