HENRY ABBEY QUOTES

American poet (1842-1911)

Henry Abbey quote

Our yesterdays are like a lonely and a ruined land wherein a breeze of recollection sighs--a fading land to which is no return.

HENRY ABBEY, "Invocation to the Sun"

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Tags: yesterday, past


The end we know not; but we wander on, down the regretful wilderness of time.

HENRY ABBEY, "Emmanuel"

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Tags: time, future


All governments, books, customs, buildings, railways, ships, and all the stark realities that men have made, are but imagination's utterances.

HENRY ABBEY, "Eleusinia"

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Tags: imagination, creativity


Love is the key-note of the universe--the theme, the melody.

HENRY ABBEY, "The Troubadour"

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Tags: love, universe


Most men are prisoners at best, who some strong habit every drag about like chain and ball.

HENRY ABBEY, "The Galley Slave"

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Tags: habit


Hear in a realm of wordless dreams--
That inner life which knows and thinks;
My thirsty spirit comes and drinks
The petal dew of golden streams;
Where death is less than what it seems,
And life is subtler than the Sphinx.

HENRY ABBEY, "May Dreams"

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Tags: dreams


Men over-estimate what they desire
Through ignorance of it: credulous Pursuit
Thinks his betrothed, Possession, is divine;
But finds she is a mortal like himself.

HENRY ABBEY, "Karagwe"

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Tags: desire


And once I knew a meditative rose that never raised its head from bowing down, yet drew its inspiration from the stars. It bloomed and faded here beside the road, and, being a poet, wrote on empty air with fragrance all the beauty of its soul.

HENRY ABBEY, "A Morning Pastoral"

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Tags: roses


The artist labors while he may, but finds at best too brief the day; and, tho' his works outlast the time and nation that they make sublime, he feels and sees that Nature knows nothing of time in what she does, but has a leisure infinite wherein to do her work aright.

HENRY ABBEY, "Along the Nile"

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Tags: artists, time


Envy is the coward side of Hate, and all her ways are bleak and desolate.

HENRY ABBEY, "The Host's Humility"

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Tags: envy, hate


Life is the wave's deep whisper on the shore of a great sea beyond.

HENRY ABBEY, "The Roman Sentinel"

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Tags: life


Though Duty's face is stern, her path is best: they sweetly sleep who die upon her breast.

HENRY ABBEY, "The Roman Sentinel"

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Tags: duty


What do we plant when we plant the tree? We plant the ship that will cross the sea, we plant the mast to carry the sails, we plant the planks to withstand the gales--the keel, the keelson, and beam and knee--we plant the ship when we plant the tree.

HENRY ABBEY, "What Do We Plant"

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Tags: trees


The noblest works of human art and pride show that their makers were not satisfied.

HENRY ABBEY, "Faciebat"

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Tags: art, pride


Behold the grapes and all the fruits that Autumn gives today, as robed in red and gold, she rules, the Empress of Decay!

HENRY ABBEY, "Autumn Ballad"

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Tags: autumn


The artist labors while he may,
But finds at best too brief the day;
And, tho' his works outlast the time
And nation that they make sublime,
He feels and sees that Nature knows
Nothing of time in what she does,
But has a leisure infinite
Wherein to do her work aright.

HENRY ABBEY, "Along the Nile"

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Tags: art


We see the clouds of summer go and come,
And thirsty verdure praying them to give:
We cry, "O Nature, tell us why we live!"
She smiles with beauty, but her lips are dumb.

HENRY ABBEY, "While the Days Go By"

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Tags: summer


For looking down the ladder of our deeds,
The rounds seem slender: all past work appears
Unto the doer faulty: the heart bleeds,
And pale Regret comes weltering in tears,
To think how poor our best has been, how vain,
Beside the excellence we would attain.

HENRY ABBEY, "Faciebat"

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O May! robed in your gown of flowers,
Nun-like, gaze from your balmy cell,
Under your crown of asphodel,
And sentinel all the summer hours;
Rising among your daisy bowers,
Like Venus from her cradled shell!

HENRY ABBEY, "May Dreams"

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In the temple, high in place
Stood Dame Fortune, fair of face,
Holding Plutus, god of riches,
In her fond and fickle arms.
Horns of plenty at her feet
Emptied half their contents sweet,
And winged Cupid stood before her,
Fascinated by her charms.

HENRY ABBEY, "The City of Success"

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Tags: fortune