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?
Keating: Sucking all the marrow out of life doesn’t mean choking on the bone.
Daulton : (answering phone) Welton Academy, hello? … Yes he is, hold on. Mr. Nolan, it’s for you. (holds up phone) It’s God. He says we should have girls at Welton.
John Keating : Why do we need language?
Neil Perry : To communicate…
John Keating : Nooo!! To woo women!
Keating: No matter what anybody tells you, words & ideas can change the world.
Keating: Now I’d like you to step forward over here. 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.