Henry David Thoreau Excerpt from Where I Lived, and What I Lived For

My Life Has Been the Poem

My life has been the poem I would have writ,
But I could not both live and utter it.

On Sep 6, 1847, Henry David Thoreau leaves his home on Walden to move into the home of Ralph Waldo Emerson, his mentor. Nothing describes who Henry David Thoreau was more than his own words. His appreciation for nature and his surroundings speaks volumes and as a reader, we are thankful that the city life was not for him.

An excerpt from Where I Lived, and What I Lived For
Walden Or Life In The Woods by Henry David Thoreau

The only house I had been the owner of before, if I except a boat, was a tent, which I used occasionally when making excursions in the summer, and this is still rolled up in my garret; but the boat, after passing from hand to hand, has gone down the stream of time. With this more substantial shelter about me, I had made some progress toward settling in the world. This frame, so slightly clad, was a sort of crystallization around me, and reacted on the builder. It was suggestive somewhat as a picture in outlines. I did not need to go outdoors to take the air, for the atmosphere within had lost none of its freshness. It was not so much within doors as behind a door where I sat, even in the rainiest weather. The Harivansa says, “An abode without birds is like a meat without seasoning.” Such was not my abode, for I found myself suddenly neighbor to the birds; not by having imprisoned one, but having caged myself near them. I was not only nearer to some of those which commonly frequent the garden and the orchard, but to those smaller and more thrilling songsters of the forest which never, or rarely, serenade a villager – the wood thrush, the veery, the scarlet tanager, the field sparrow, the whip-poor-will, and many others.

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