Henry David Thoreau Quotations: Sun, Moon, & Stars
A sky without clouds is a meadow without flowers.—Journal, 24 June 1852
By my intimacy with nature I find myself withdrawn from man. My interest in the sun and the moon, in the morning and the evening, compels me to solitude.—Journal, 26 July 1851
Enough has been said in these days of the charm of fluent writing. We hear it complained of some works of genius, that they have fine thoughts, but are irregular and have no flow. But even the mountain peaks in the horizon are, to the eye of science, parts of one range. We should consider that the flow of thought is more like a tidal wave than a prone river, and is the result of a celestial influence, not of any declivity in its channel.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
Every sunset inspires me with the desire to go to a West as distant and as fair as that into which the sun goes down.—Journal, 21 November 1850
How many things can you go away from? They see the comet from the northwest coast just as plainly as we do, and the same stars through its tail. Take the shortest way round and stay at home. A man dwells in his native valley like a corolla in its calyx, like an acorn in its cup. Here, of course, is all that you love, all that you expect, all that you are. Here is your bride elect, as close to you as she can be got. Here is all the best and all the worst you can imagine. What more do you want? Bear hereaway then! Foolish people imagine that what they imagine is somewhere else. That stuff is not made in any factory but your own.—Journal, 1 November 1858
However much we may admire the orator's occasional bursts of eloquence, the noblest written words are commonly as far behind or above the fleeting spoken language as the firmament with its stars is behind the clouds.—Walden
In music are the centripetal and centrifugal forces. The universe needed only to hear a divine harmony that every star might fall into its proper place and assume a true sphericity.—Journal, 3 July 1840
In our science and philosophy, even, there is commonly no true and absolute account of things. The spirit of sect and bigotry has planted its hoof amid the stars. You have only to discuss the problem, whether the stars are inhabited or not, in order to discover it.—"Life Without Principle"
It is the lighting up of the mist by the sun. Man cannot know in any higher sense than this, any more than he can look serenely and with impunity in the face of the sun: Ὡς τὶ νοῶν, οὐ κεῖνον νοήσεις,—“You will not perceive that, as perceiving a particular thing,” say the Chaldean Oracles.—"Walking"
Love never stands still, nor does its object. It is the revolving sun and the swelling bud. If I know what I love, it is because I remember it.—Journal, 14 March 1842