Though the city is no more attractive to me than ever yet I see less difference between a city & and some dismallest swamp than formerly. It is a swamp too dismal & dreary even for me.—Journal, 29 July 1850
We have the silver and the golden birch. This is like a fair, flaxen-haired sister of the dark-complexioned black birch, with golden ringlets. How lustily it takes hold of the swampy soil, and braces itself! And here flows a dark cherry-wood or wine-colored brook over the iron-red sands in the somber swamp,—swampy wine. In an undress, this tree. Ah, time will come when these will be all gone.—Journal, 4 January 1853
When life looks sandy and barren, is reduced to its lowest terms, we have no appetite, and it has no flavor, then let me visit such a swamp as this, deep and impenetrable, where the earth quakes for a rod around you at every step, with its open water where the swallows skim and twitter, its meadow and cotton-grass, its dense patches of dwarf andromeda, now brownish-green, with clumps of blueberry bushes, its spruces and its verdurous border of woods imbowering it on every side.—Journal, 17 July 1852
Would it not be a luxury to stand up to one's chin in some retired swamp for a whole summer's day, scenting the sweet-fern and bilberry blows, and lulled by the minstrelsy of gnats and mosquitoes?—Journal, 14 June 1840
Would it not be well to describe some of those rough all-day walks across lots?—as that of the 15th, picking our way over quaking meadows and swamps and occasionally slipping into the muddy batter midleg deep; jumping or fording ditches and brooks; forcing our way through dense blueberry swamps, where there is water beneath and bushes above . . . now through a dense pine wood, descending into a rank, dry swamp, where the cinnamon fern rises above your head, with isles of poison-dogwood . . .—Journal, 27 August 1854
Yes, though you may think me perverse, if it were proposed to me to dwell in the neighborhood of the most beautiful garden that ever human art contrived, or else of a Dismal Swamp, I should certainly decide for the swamp.—"Walking"