I have learned that the swiftest traveler is he that goes afoot.
Wide creek and mist-blurred grass, moss is slippery though there’s been no rain, pine sings but there’s no wind, who can leap the world’s ties and sit with me among white clouds?
It is almost a law that when a man embarks on a great adventure he must cut all ties. He must take himself off to the wilderness…
There is no liberty except the liberty of someone making their way towards something.
I know there are a lot of beautiful churches and chapels out there that I should go look at…It doesn’t matter how charming cultures and art are, they’re useless without sympathy—All the prettiness of tapestries, lands, people: worthless if there is no sympathy—Poets of genius are just decorations on the wall if without the poetry of kindness…
To travel is to change one’s skin.
When spring comes to Paris the humblest mortal alive must feel that he dwells in paradise.
It was spring in Paris and everything looked just a little too beautiful…
This is the moment when I know that any and all signs pointing to this or that place should be ignored, that one should always go toward the place for which there is no sign.
It is nicer to think than to do, to feel than to think, but nicest of all merely to look.
Should I at last go on my pilgrimage on foot on the dark roads around America?
None of us has the time to live the true dramas of the life that we are destined for.
The good traveler is ignorant of his destination, the perfect traveler is ignorant of his origin.
I don’t need much space or environment. I only need to feel that I don’t positively dislike a place.
Go fish and hunt far and wide day by day…Rise free from care before dawn, and seek adventures. Let the noon find thee by other lakes, and the night overtake thee everywhere at home…Grow wild according to thy nature…
I was making enough money to live with ease; the world was before me, I could travel all over it and study and enjoy myself without stint; yet I chose deliberately to concentrate myself on work and devote all my energies to a labor from which I could hope neither money nor honor. I knew that if I did the best in me, first-rate work, I should find but few readers: the better the work, the fewer; yet I was resolved to do all I knew, come what come might.
There where the huddled houses throng, there where the path to the cemetery rises, there where the swollen river flows, there I dreamt of my life.
I shall not consider it as a misfortune that things have gone so; on the contrary, notwithstanding all kinds of emotions, I feel a certain calm. There is safety in the midst of danger. What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything? It will be a hard pull for me; the tide rises high, almost to the lips and perhaps higher still, how can I know? But I shall fight my battle, and sell my life dearly, and try to win and get the best of it.
I was already tramping the streets of Europe, chatting with passers-by, sipping a drink on a crowded terrace. I was alone but not the least bit lonely. The air smelled different, the people looked different. Even the trees and flowers were different. How I craved that — something different! To be able to talk freely, to be understood, to be accepted. A land of true kinsfolk, that’s what Europe meant to me. The home of the artist, the vagabond, the dreamer.
I do believe if you don’t like things you leave for someplace you’ve never gone before.