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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807 – 1882) was an American educator and poet.
General table talk and poem quotes:
  • If we could read the secret history of our enemies we should find in each man’s life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.
  • Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.
  • People demand freedom only when they have no power.
  • The Laws of Nature are just, but terrible. There is no weak mercy in them. Cause and consequence are inseparable and inevitable. The elements have no forbearance. The fire burns, the water drowns, the air consumes, the earth buries. And perhaps it would be well for our race if the punishment of crimes against the Laws of Man were as inevitable as the punishment of crimes against the Laws of Nature, — were Man as unerring in his judgments as Nature.
  • Lives of great men all remind us, we can make our lives sublime, and, departing, leave behind us, footprints on the sands of time.
  • Round about what is, lies a whole mysterious world of might be, — a psychological romance of possibilities and things that do not happen. By going out a few minutes sooner or later, by stopping to speak with a friend at a corner, by meeting this man or that, or by turning down this street instead of the other, we may let slip some great occasion of good, or avoid some impending evil, by which the whole current of our lives would have been changed. There is no possible solution to the dark enigma but the one word, “Providence.”
  • Method is more important than strength, when you wish to control your enemies. By dropping golden beads near a snake, a crow once managed To have a passer-by kill the snake for the beads.
  • When the heart goes before, like a lamp, and illumines the pathway, many things are made clear that else lie hidden in darkness.
  • Something the heart must have to cherish; must love, and joy, and sorrow learn: something with passion clasp, or perish, and in itself to ashes burn.
  • For age is opportunity no less Than youth itself, though in another dress, And as the evening twilight fades away The sky is filled with stars, invisible by day.
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