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Music pulled me like a gravitational force. I entered college as a physics major but left as a Bachelor of Music, a degree with the same practical application as, say, one in the History of Chinese Poetry.
I've been writing a lot of poetry recently. It helps me think and work things out.
Poetry is also the physical self of the poet, and it is impossible to separate the poet from his poetry.
I definitely wish to distinguish American poetry from British or other English language poetry.
Still, language is resilient, and poetry when it is pressured simply goes underground.
When I hit a block, regardless of what I am writing, what the subject matter is, or what's going on in the plot, I go back and I read Pablo Neruda's poetry. I don't actually speak Spanish, so I read it translation. But I always go back to Neruda. I don't know why, but it calms me, calms my brain.
I want to write a book of poetry, as well as children's stories.
As for political poetry, as it's usually defined, it seems there's very little good political poetry.
While I've had a great distaste for what's usually called song in modern poetry or for what's usually called music, I really don't think of speech as so far from song.
My old teacher's definition of poetry is an attempt to understand.
Many attempts have been made by writers on art and poetry to define beauty in the abstract, to express it in the most general terms, to find some universal formula for it.
Distinctly American poetry is usually written in the context of one's geographic landscape, sometimes out of one's cultural myths, and often with reference to gender and race or ethnic origins.
I have always wanted what I have now come to call the voice of personal narrative. That has always been the appealing voice in poetry. It started for me lyrically in Shakespeare's sonnets.
I teach a lecture course on American poetry to as many as 150 students. For a lot of them, it's their only elective, so this is their one shot. They'll take the Russian Novel or American Poetry, so I want to give them the high points, the inescapable poets.
My father loved poetry and music. But deep in himself he thought teaching the finest thing a person could do.
It's necessary to start most work alone. But I'm tickled to death when I can pull somebody in or join someone, whether it's borrowing poetry or traveling with an associate.
I started out as a writer. Poetry and prose and also kind of satirical David Sedaris-esque stuff.
In my opinion, the most significant works of the twentieth century are those that rise beyond the conceptual tyranny of genre; they are, at the same time, poetry, criticism, narrative, drama, etc.
I've often said that all poetry is political. This is because real poems deal with a human response to reality and politics is part of reality, history in the making. Even if a poet writes about sitting in a glass house drinking tea, it reflects politics.
I love painting and music, of course. I don't know nearly as much about them as I know about poetry. I've certainly been influenced by fiction. I was overwhelmed by War and Peace when I read it, and I didn't read it until I was in my late 20s.
Poetry is the elder sister of history, the mother of language, the ancestress of civilization.
Orson F. Whitney
In high school I was very much involved in poetry. You cannot read a poem quickly. There's too much going on there. There are rhythms and alliterations. You have to read poetry slow, slow, slow to absorb it all.
Eugene H. Peterson
If there's no money in poetry, neither is there poetry in money.
My obsession with time informs my poetry so completely it is hard for me to summarize it. We want time to pass, for new things to happen to us, we want to hold on to certain moments, we don't want our lives to end.
Conventional wisdom notwithstanding, there is no reason either in football or in poetry why the two should not meet in a man's life if he has the weight and cares about the words.
John F. Kennedy
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