a perfect organism
...Thoreau's Journal: 06-Dec-1856

How every one of these leaves that are blown about the snow-crust or lie neglected beneath, soon to turn to mould! Not merely a matted mass of fibres like a sheet of paper, but a perfect organism and system in itself, so that no mortal has ever yet discerned or explored its beauty.


G. Tod Slone said...

You're not censoring Thoreau's caustic comments on Concordians, are you? What would he have to say, for example, about the Concord Chamber of Commerce today? That would have been interesting! Anyhow, check out my page on Walden and my battles with Concord authorities (see http://www.theamericandissident.org/WaldenPondStateReservation.htm).

I would like to see more of Henry's keen-eyed causticity on your blog.

G. Tod Slone, Ed. The American Dissident

son rivers said...

I'm afraid Henry was more of an optimist than a caustic dissident. And so his journals will reflect this. It's easy to pick a fight with ignorance in human affairs. But why waste all your precious breath on that. It's wiser to learn from the truth of the real things all around us. As to commerce though, here's a quote from an October posting: "Banks built of granite, after some Grecian or Roman style, with their porticoes and their safes of iron, are not so permanent, and cannot give me so good security for capital invested in them, as the heads of weathered hardhack in the meadow." Sure, he spent some time commenting on the inequities and follies of authority (and most words hit the bullseye), but I think Henry kept his capital where it counted: in the transcendent.

Anonymous said...

Cut the soft PC nature quotes and start posting Henry's political thoughts! That is what he truly was, a commentator on humanity, not all this nature fluff for a bunch of wussy English majors!

Anonymous said...

I lived in eastern Massachusetts and visited Walden Pond frequently.

Mr. Slone, you are so right - Concord is nothing but a bunch of rich white conservatives (can anyone be anything else, considering how expensive it is to live there?).

They would have arrested Henry or thrown him out of town, too!

I too am TIRED of this Quote page trying to be as inoffensive as possibke.

Henry was about stirring things up.

Clearly those who pretend to be for Henry are just using him for their own purposes and watering him down to nothing in the process.

Either this Web site starts quoting REAL quotes from the man or it should just go away!

Have the guts to post ALL of Henry's journal entries, I dare you!

son rivers said...

Dear Anonymous(es). You obviously have battles in which you need the support of Mr. Thoreau. I guess when I did this site, I did too. Obviously very different battles that require very different Thoreaus. Of course, the battle isn't outside of us, as I discovered over a long long time. But inside. But no one, including Thoreau, can help with that one. That's why it's the most difficult one to fight. And that's why we end up fighting everyone and everything but that one.

Anonymous said...

The only agendas I have here are to not have my knowledge of Henry and that which you dispense to others by default prechewed for us.

I am also tired of seeing henry portrayed as this spiritual nature hippy by modern audiences. The very language you speak reeks of New Age psychobabble (the battle is within us - hoy god!).

You have done one good though - not only will I do my best to show that Henry's main goal was to make people aware of how limiting society was and is, but I will also be getting his journals so I can read them for myself unfiltered.

Anonymous said...

I also want to thank Mr. Slone for his clearly one-man battle against the fascist rulers of Concord and the whole Bahston region.

You have made me truly aware of how those white liberal and conservative arrogant snobs have corrupted and supress Henry's true ideals. He would be appalled beyond belief at what they have done to his beloved Walden.

I cannot read Henry's quotes without feeling a sickness from what today's citizens have done to Henry and Walden.

Posting these fluffy little quotes only adds to the crime by white washing what is really going on.

Mr. Slone, you are no longer alone.
The fascists of Eastern Mass are going down.

son rivers said...

"Henry's main goal was to make people aware of how limiting society was and is" I think his main goal was to make us realize how limiting we ourselves are.

"The very language you speak reeks of New Age psychobabble." Nice try. It's anything but. You seem like the daring sort. Try reading some Jed McKenna. If you dare.

Anonymous said...

You have now proven to me that your thinking and agenda is nothing more than New Age “spiritual” fuzziness for the generation of Americans who are dissatisfied and confused about their nice little white Protestant upbringing.

You and they are the first ones to grab on to anything that is not Western and has philosophical bites that seem so profound. You know, like what is the sound of one hand clapping.

You are using Henry for just this purpose. The fact that he was an American gives a sense of credibility to your agenda.

You ignore the real Henry, the one who railed against the stupidity of human society. The Henry who actively supported John Brown, who was no spiritual wimp when it came to pushing his sense of justice on America.

Why don’t you quote some of the things Henry had to say about a man who actively slaughtered others and tried to provoke civil war in order to stop slavery?

Why don’t you post the quotes that show how much Henry preferred the company of men in every sense of the word?

But no – we will continue to get Henry’s placid thoughts on trees and birds and bunnies to make the humanities majors reading this blog happy and content in their nice and safe little white world.

How does it feel playing into the hands of the very people Mr. Slone is fighting against, the ones who subvert Henry and Walden for their own agendas, which is to make money off the man and his pond while pretending to be for the environment and other fluff.

Time to take the John Brown route, methinks. With words where possible, but by other means necessary if that fails.

Society is not listening to Henry once again, and they need a wakeup call.

son rivers said...

So I guess you don't dare. That's OK too.

Anonymous said...

Good Lord - are you actually trying to downplay my comments by calling me CHICKEN??!

I looked at that person you mentioned, and he is just another New Age wannabe guru pretending to be some kind of great spiritual leader to the masses. If I want my brain to go that soft, I will just get a lobotomy and save time.

This kind of fuzzy, pseudointellectual "thinking" that you are playing a role in promoting is exactly what will bring down our society and eventually all of civilization that
has fought for ages to bring us out of the dark ages.

Either you really believe what you say or you are playing psychological games to bring me down, or both. Either way your refusal to display the real Henry continues to water him down and subvert all that he dedicated his life to.

Of course the real cowards here are the hordes of English majors who are too timid to rock the boat or uneducated enough to ever really appreciate the real Henry.

Oh look, a pretty flower! Let us medicate on that, shall we?

son rivers said...


bandit said...

Henry Thoreau a civil dissident commemtator in his time?-I didn't know that. Now I feel I should actually read something about him.
This is the first time I've read Thoreau, knowing little or nothing of him other than he lived by a pond when there was a lot more "country" around.
I live in a city, recent circumstance propelling me back to a ghetto that I rose from, amongst all variety of diverse people literally from across the globe, most of them on the dole, like me, poverty and all its ilk. Most of my dealings here are concerned with not being hijacked while walking my dog, a small price I pay for enjoying the outdoors.
I'm too worldly wise to be suckered by some new age movement-I make my own way, though I have yet to obtain an English degree, and probably never will.
I do like to write, though, and enjoy a good read, planning to catch up on authors I've never been introduced to.
I'll have to give Mr. Slone's site a look.

Anonymous said...

In defense of Mr. Perry.

I've been reading this blog for a while now, enjoying it, minding my own business, and now I feel compelled to say something. I have read his journals and find this blog to be a good distillation of his writings. Slone and company have not read all of Thoreau's writings. They need to. It will change their bitterness into thankfulness.

Thank you to Mr. Perry for posting this blog. Continue dispite the obstacles.

Northland said...

I think Slone and you anonymous commenters need to get Thoreau's Journals and read them. Then you can truly see Thoreau for who he was - and not look at Perry's blog as somehow posting untruths that don't align with your 21st century perceptions.
I have used Perry's postings since he started this blog to springboard to Thoreau's overall day postings. Perry might make minor transcription errors, but he does post Thoreau's Journals as they appear. Thoreau was a true naturalist, and became more so as he got older. Day-to-day his journal entries reflect this.

michael jameson said...

the tree, fertilizing the soil around it by killing off part of itself to enrich the soil."perfect"!