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John Keating: No matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world.

Meeks: I'll try anything once.
Dalton: Yeah, except sex.

John Keating: They're not that different from you, are they? Same haircuts. Full of hormones, just like you. Invincible, just like you feel. The world is their oyster. They believe they're destined for great things, just like many of you, their eyes are full of hope, just like you. Did they wait until it was too late to make from their lives even one iota of what they were capable? Because, you see gentlemen, these boys are now fertilizing daffodils. But if you listen real close, you can hear them whisper their legacy to you. Go on, lean in. Listen, you hear it? --- Carpe --- hear it? --- Carpe, carpe diem, seize the day boys, make your lives extraordinary.

John Keating: O Captain, my Captain. Who knows where that comes from? Anybody? Not a clue? It's from a poem by Walt Whitman about Mr. Abraham Lincoln. Now in this class you can either call me Mr. Keating, or if you're slightly more daring, O Captain my Captain.

John Keating: We don't read and write poetry because it's cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for. To quote from Whitman, "O me! O life!... of the questions of these recurring; of the endless trains of the faithless--of cities filled with the foolish; what good amid these, O me, O life? Answer. That you are here - that life exists, and identity; that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse." That the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse. What will your verse be?

John Keating: Sucking all the marrow out of life doesn't mean choking on the bone.

John Keating: There is a time for daring and a time for caution, and a wise man knows which is called for.

John Keating: I thought the purpose of education was to learn to think for yourself.
Nolan: At these boys ages? Not on your life!

Neil: For the first time in my life, I know what I want to do! And for the first time, I'm going to DO IT! Whether my father wants me to or not! Carpe dium!

John Keating: We're not laughing at you - we're laughing near you.

Dalton: [answering phone] Welton Academy, hello. Yes he is, hold on. Mr. Nolan, it's for you. It's God. He says we should have girls at Welton.

John Keating: Why do we need language?
Neil: To communicate...
John Keating: Nooo!! To woo women!

[Quoting Henry David Thoreau.]
Neil: I went into the woods because I wanted to live deliberately. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life ... to put to rout all that was not life; and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.

McAllister: Show me the heart unfettered by foolish dreams and I'll show you a happy man.
John Keating: But only in their dreams can men be truly free. 'Twas always thus and always thus will be.
McAllister: Tennyson?
John Keating: No, Keating.

Todd Aderson: I... I close my eyes. His image floats beside me. A sweaty-toothed madman with a stare that pounds my brain.
John Keating: Excellent! Have him act. Give it rhythm!
Todd Aderson: His hands reach out and choke me
[All the time he mumbles slowly]
Todd Aderson: Truth... Truth is like a blanket that always leaves your feet cold.
John Keating: [some of the class start to laugh] To hell with them, more about the blanket!
Todd Aderson: Stretch it, pull it, it will never cover any of us. Kick at it, beat at it, it will never be enough-
John Keating: Don't stop!
Todd Aderson: From the moment we enter crying to the moment we leave dying, it will cover just your head as you wail and cry and scream!

Neil: I mean, if I was ever going to buy a desk set... twice! I would probably buy this one, both times! In fact, its shape is rather aerodynamic isn't it? You can feel it. This desk set wants to fly!
[Neil hands the desk set to Todd]
Neil: The world's first flying desk set!
[Todd throws it off the roof]
Neil: Oh my! Well, I wouldn't worry, you'll get another one next year.

[After hearing "The Introduction to Poetry"]
John Keating: Excrement! That's what I think of Mr. J. Evans Pritchard! We're not laying pipe! We're talking about poetry. How can you describe poetry like American Bandstand? "I like Byron, I give him a 42 but I can't dance to it!"

[Joining the DPS]
Dalton: It'll help you get Chris!
Knox: Yeah?
Dalton: Women swoon!
[Dalton rushes off to class]
Knox: Why do they swoon?
[Runs after Dalton]
Knox: Tell me why they swoon!

John Keating: Boys, you must strive to find your own voice. Because the longer you wait to begin, the less likely you are to find it at all. Thoreau said, "Most men lead lives of quiet desperation." Don't be resigned to that. Break out!

John Keating: You must trust that your beliefs are unique, your won, even though others may think them odd or unpopular, even though the herd may go, "That's baaaaaaad."


Todd Aderson: [standing on his desk] Captain my captain.

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