Beauty is where it is perceived.—Journal, 16 December 1840
Books of natural history make the most cheerful winter reading. I read in Audubon with a thrill of delight, when the snow covers the ground, of the magnolia, and the Florida keys, and their warm sea breezes; of the fence-rail, and the cotton-tree, and the migrations of the rice-bird; of the breaking up of winter in Labrador, and the melting of the snow on the forks of the Missouri; and owe an accession of health to these reminiscences of luxuriant nature.—"Natural History of Massachusetts"
Every child begins the world again.—Walden
Every landscape which is dreary enough has a certain beauty to me.—Cape Cod
For the true art is not merely a sublime consolation and holiday labor, which the gods have given to sickly mortals; but such a masterpiece as you may imagine a dweller on the tablelands of central Asia might produce, with threescore and ten years for canvas, and the faculties of a man for tools,—a human life; wherein you might hope to discover more than the freshness of Guido's Aurora, or the mild light of Titian's landscapes,—no bald imitation nor even rival of Nature, but rather the restored original of which she is the reflection. — "The Service"—"The Service"
He will take a false step never, even in the most arduous times, for then the music will not fail to swell into greater sweetness and volume, and itself rule the movement it inspired.—Journal, 30 June 1840