Henry Seidel Canby from Walt Whitman, An American
I do not believe that an inability or unwillingness to hold a paying job, or even to stick to an assigned task, is a sign of literary promise, but these traits are very characteristic of men whose inner life is active and demands nourishment. Already one can say that Walt was practising, what later he preached, as did Thoreau, that living is more important than making a living. 'Some men lead professional lives — some men just live,' he said to Traubel years later. 'I prefer to just live.'