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All Is Truth - Poem by Walt Whitman


O ME, man of slack faith so long!
Standing aloof--denying portions so long;
Only aware to-day of compact, all-diffused truth;
Discovering to-day there is no lie, or form of lie, and can be none,
but grows as inevitably upon itself as the truth does upon
itself,
Or as any law of the earth, or any natural production of the earth
does.

(This is curious, and may not be realized immediately--But it must be
realized;
I feel in myself that I represent falsehoods equally with the rest,
And that the universe does.)

Where has fail'd a perfect return, indifferent of lies or the truth?
Is it upon the ground, or in water or fire? or in the spirit of man?
or in the meat and blood? 10

Meditating among liars, and retreating sternly into myself, I see
that there are really no liars or lies after all,
And that nothing fails its perfect return--And that what are called
lies are perfect returns,
And that each thing exactly represents itself, and what has preceded
it,
And that the truth includes all, and is compact, just as much as
space is compact,
And that there is no flaw or vacuum in the amount of the truth--but
that all is truth without exception;
And henceforth I will go celebrate anything I see or am,
And sing and laugh, and deny nothing.

Comments about All Is Truth by Walt Whitman

  • Ratnakar Mandlik 4/8/2019 8:46:00 AM

    Meditating among liars! What a fanciful exercise? An innovative theme and departure from routine. Reply

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  • Kshirod Kumar Dehury 12/4/2017 7:16:00 AM

    i like this poem, i really enjoy your poem.10+++ Reply

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  • John Northern 12/15/2016 6:27:00 PM

    For me the key to this poem is in the first letter 'O'. As in zero, nothing, the opposition being everything, all.
    To know the truth of someting, it's matter, , is to consider its measurement, which is in effect, an infinite degree, consequently there are no truths in number, zero and infinity are opposite and equal at the same time.they co exist
    Our universe is eternal and created from nothing with infinite faith
    Reply

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  • Panmelys Panmelys 2/7/2015 8:08:00 AM

    It is a wonderful message of truth in all its onion skins, no part of life or nature can deny this, it is for humans to seek this in every way given to him or her to search and discover. Walt Whitman came to America when she mostly needed someone to put into language her enormous potential of future greatness, and indeed she is a remarkable example of unity, in all its cloak of many colors, in so short a space of time. Just 500 years and she has risen to become a worlwide power, and will continue to grow and expand, develop depth of wisdom as she spreads her wings and discovers all of Walt Whitman called - leaves of grass. A united nation has one flag, one anthem! Panmelys Reply

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  • Gajanan Mishra 6/25/2014 10:27:00 AM

    sing and laugh and deny nothing. I like it. Reply

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    10 person did not like.
  • James Mccallum 2/12/2010 1:14:00 PM

    I think the clue to what Walt is saying is the effect. The perfect return. That no idea, statement or action is in itself a truth or a lie. It is the consequence of the idea, statement or action, 'the perfect return' that embodies the truth. Consider the first chapter of James from the New Testament. How hardship is a blessing. You are the perfect result of the life you lived. The connection of opposites 'consider all your hardships a blessing, so as my truth my work may be complete in you.' No judgment no relativism, just perseverance. Reply

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  • seriz o 4/8/2008 3:03:00 AM

    how can there be any bond between two things that are exact opposites, really? some things can not and should not be determined by observations alone. even Satan takes the form of an angel of light. there are absolute truths. flawed views of sin cause us to romanticize that we could ever reconcile good and evil. relativism (not relativity) so effectively leads men astray, and ever so often, even the greatest of men. Reply

    John Northern (12/15/2016 5:25:00 PM)

    Nothing and everything are infinitely bonded.
    And give one of your absolute truths?

    10 person liked.
    5 person did not like.
  • nobody anonymous 8/27/2007 4:13:00 AM

    Truth and lies...what are the differences? Indeed, there are none, for the boundaries are obscured...the truth are twisted and tarnished as spinning of information is so widespread nowadays. Perhaps, we should all agree that the world was never meant to be black or white but grey....so true indeed the poem...all is truth for there are no lies... Reply

    6 person liked.
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  • Jake Ralston 12/17/2005 2:21:00 PM

    I really enjoyed how Walt Whitman described lieing in this poem. He looked at as if there really was no liers at all, just what people believed was right. It puts a big twist in how you look at people who don't tell the truth. It makes you lighten up a little more and just go with the flows of what people tell you and not get freakishly angry if someone happens to not know what they're talking about. Great poem. Reply

    8 person liked.
    4 person did not like.
  • Samantha Pauley 12/15/2005 10:12:00 AM

    I liked this poem because it makes it seem as if there are no real truths or lies, only what a person believes to be true or false. Reply

    6 person liked.
    4 person did not like.
Read all 13 comments »
Truth Poems
  1. 1. All Is Truth
    Walt Whitman
  2. 2. Sonnet 138: When My Love Swears That She..
    William Shakespeare
  3. 3. Tell All The Truth
    Emily Dickinson
  4. 4. Truth
    Geoffrey Chaucer
  5. 5. The Simple Truth
    Philip Levine
  6. 6. A Legend Of Truth
    Rudyard Kipling
  7. 7. The Truth Of Woman
    Sir Walter Scott
  8. 8. The Truth The Dead Know
    Anne Sexton
  9. 9. This Side Of The Truth
    Dylan Thomas
  10. 10. The Truth In You
    Lovina Sylvia Chidi
  11. 11. Truth—is As Old As God
    Emily Dickinson
  12. 12. Loving In Truth, And Fain In Verse My Lo..
    Sir Philip Sidney
  13. 13. Search For Truth
    David Herbert Lawrence
  14. 14. Truth
    Stephen Crane
  15. 15. If Truth In Hearts That Perish
    Alfred Edward Housman
  16. 16. Beauty Is Truth, Truth Beauty
    Jonathan ROBIN
  17. 17. Truth And Absolute Truth
    Gajanan Mishra
  18. 18. The Truth—is Stirless
    Emily Dickinson
  19. 19. Truth Truth Truth
    Gajanan Mishra
  20. 20. Truth, Truth
    Gajanan Mishra
  21. 21. Sonnet I: Loving In Truth
    Sir Philip Sidney
  22. 22. Dark Truth
    Robert William Service
  23. 23. Do You Know The Truth?
    Bob Gotti
  24. 24. Sonnet: Speak The Truth Always
    Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  25. 25. Truth Is What Truth Is
    Gajanan Mishra
  26. 26. Truth Creates Truth
    Gajanan Mishra
  27. 27. Truth Is Truth And It Is All In All
    Gajanan Mishra
  28. 28. Truth
    Sandra Osborne
  29. 29. Truth And Error
    Robert Herrick
  30. 30. The Truth About Life
    Lovina Sylvia Chidi
  31. 31. 'Me And Teddy Bears - The Truth' (Exclus..
    Michael Shepherd
  32. 32. Spirit & Truth
    Luke Easter
  33. 33. Truth Is Stranger Than Friction
    Michael Shepherd
  34. 34. In Cause Truth Risk All Truth Defend
    Terence George Craddock (Spe ..
  35. 35. God Is Truth And Truth Is God
    Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  36. 36. Sonnet Xi: In Truth, Oh Love
    Sir Philip Sidney
  37. 37. Truth And Falsehood
    Robert Herrick
  38. 38. Sonnet- What’s Life Truth?
    Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  39. 39. La Bocca De-La-Verita' (The Mouth Of Tru..
    Giuseppe Gioacchino Belli
  40. 40. Truth Aboute World
    Vlad Narkevic
  41. 41. The Truth Is Blind
    David Gascoyne
  42. 42. Patient, Thou Speak’st Only The Truth
    Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  43. 43. Truth About The Truth
    Gajanan Mishra
  44. 44. Truth Is Beauty, Beauty Is Truth
    Tulsi Shrestha
  45. 45. When Politics Are Truth, Truth Prevails!..
    Joshua Aaron Guillory
  46. 46. To Truth I Am No Rebel! To Truth I Am No..
    Joshua Aaron Guillory
  47. 47. Sonnet-Truth Remains The Same
    Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  48. 48. Sonnet: Truth Of Earthly-Life
    Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  49. 49. The Truth About Hhorace
    Eugene Field
  50. 50. Blunt Truth Or Sweet Lies?
    Rajaram Ramachandran

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Truth Poems

  1. Truth

    Fle fro the pres, and dwelle with sothefastnesse, Suffise thin owen thing, thei it be smal; For hord hath hate, and clymbyng tykelnesse, Prees hath envye, and wele blent overal. Savour no more thanne the byhove schal; Reule weel thiself, that other folk canst reede; And trouthe schal delyvere, it is no drede. Tempest the nought al croked to redresse, In trust of hire that tourneth as a bal. Myche wele stant in litel besynesse; Bywar therfore to spurne ayeyns an al; Stryve not as doth the crokke with the wal. Daunte thiself, that dauntest otheres dede; And trouthe shal delyvere, it is no drede. That the is sent, receyve in buxumnesse; The wrestlyng for the worlde axeth a fal. Here is non home, here nys but wyldernesse. Forth, pylgryme, forth! forth, beste, out of thi stal! Know thi contré! loke up! thonk God of al! Hold the heye weye, and lat thi gost the lede; And trouthe shal delyvere, it is no drede. [L'envoy.] Therfore, thou Vache, leve thine olde wrechednesse; Unto the world leve now to be thral. Crie hym mercy, that of hys hie godnesse Made the of nought, and in espec{.i}al Draw unto hym, and pray in general For the, and eke for other, hevenelyche mede; And trouthe schal delyvere, it is no drede.

  2. Tell All The Truth

    Tell all the truth but tell it slant, Success in circuit lies, Too bright for our infirm delight The truth's superb surprise; As lightning to the children eased With explanation kind, The truth must dazzle gradually Or every man be blind.

  3. The Simple Truth

    I bought a dollar and a half's worth of small red potatoes, took them home, boiled them in their jackets and ate them for dinner with a little butter and salt. Then I walked through the dried fields on the edge of town. In middle June the light hung on in the dark furrows at my feet, and in the mountain oaks overhead the birds were gathering for the night, the jays and mockers squawking back and forth, the finches still darting into the dusty light. The woman who sold me the potatoes was from Poland; she was someone out of my childhood in a pink spangled sweater and sunglasses praising the perfection of all her fruits and vegetables at the road-side stand and urging me to taste even the pale, raw sweet corn trucked all the way, she swore, from New Jersey. "Eat, eat" she said, "Even if you don't I'll say you did." Some things you know all your life. They are so simple and true they must be said without elegance, meter and rhyme, they must be laid on the table beside the salt shaker, the glass of water, the absence of light gathering in the shadows of picture frames, they must be naked and alone, they must stand for themselves. My friend Henri and I arrived at this together in 1965 before I went away, before he began to kill himself, and the two of us to betray our love. Can you taste what I'm saying? It is onions or potatoes, a pinch of simple salt, the wealth of melting butter, it is obvious, it stays in the back of your throat like a truth you never uttered because the time was always wrong, it stays there for the rest of your life, unspoken, made of that dirt we call earth, the metal we call salt, in a form we have no words for, and you live on it.

  4. Sonnet 138: When My Love Swears That She Is Made Of Truth

    When my love swears that she is made of truth I do believe her, though I know she lies, That she might think me some untutored youth, Unlearnèd in the world's false subtleties. Thus vainly thinking that she thinks me young, Although she knows my days are past the best, Simply I credit her false-speaking tongue; On both sides thus is simple truth suppressed. But wherefore says she not she is unjust? And wherefore say not I that I am old? O, love's best habit is in seeming trust, And age in love, loves not to have years told. Therefore I lie with her, and she with me, And in our faults by lies we flattered be.