Magazine Web Edition > July/August/September 2008 > Thoreau A Sage in Early America


Thoreau A Sage in Early America

The 19th-century writer drank deeply from the Vedas, lived in communion with nature and advocated a life of mystical simplicity

The unlikely hermit stole a spot in the woods, built a cabin, stilled his mind and burrowed into nature. By day, whippoorwill melodies drifted through the tranquil glen. At dusk, bullfrogs bellowed deafening nocturnes. Slowly a higher presence embraced the solitary advances of the kindly Lincolnesque form, yielding a flurry of pristine secrets. By the time he died at 44, with two million words quilled in broad journals, Henry David Thoreau had softly cracked nature

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