BRYANT, William Cullen Quotes
(1794-1878), American poet
The melancholy days are come, the saddest of the year.
Difficulty is a nurse of greatness—a harsh nurse, who rocks her foster children roughly, but rocks them into strength and athletic proportions.—The mind, grappling with great aims and wrestling with mighty impediments, grows by a certain necessity to the stature of greatness.
God hath yoked to guilt, her pale tormentor, misery.
Features—the great soul's apparent seat.
The press is good or evil according to the character of those who direct it.—It is a mill that grinds all that is put into its hopper.—Fill the hopper with poisoned grain and it will grind it to meal, but there is death in the bread.
Old age is wise for itself, but not for the community.—It is wise in declining new enterprises, for it has not the power or the time to execute them; wise in shrinking from difficulty, for it has not the strength to overcome it; wise in avoiding danger, for it lacks the faculty of ready and swift action by which dangers are parried and converted into advantages.—But this is not wisdom for mankind at large, by whom new enterprises must be undertaken, dangers met, and difficulties surmounted.
They talk of short-lived pleasures: be it so; pain dies as quickly, and lets her weary prisoner go; the fiercest agonies have shortest reign.
Remorse is virtue's root; its fair increase are fruits of innocence and blessedness.
Let me often to these solitudes retire, and in their presence reassure my feeble virtue.
The groves were God's first temples. Ere man learned to hew the shaft, and lay the architrave, and spread the roof above them,—ere he framed the lofty vault, to gather and roll back the sound of anthems; in the darkling wood, amidst the cool and silence, he knelt down and offered to the Mightiest solemn thanks and supplication.
Stranger, if thou hast learned a truth which needs no school of long experience, that the world is full of guilt and misery, and hast seen enough of all its sorrows, crimes and cares to tire thee of it, enter this wild wood and view the haunts of Nature. The calm shade shall bring a kindred calm, and the sweet breeze that makes the green leaves dance shall waft a balm to thy sick heart.
Truth crushed to earth will rise again; the eternal years of God are hers; but error wounded writhes in pain, and dies amid her worshippers.