Tag Archives: Ezra Pound

“Too many poets delude themselves by thinking the mind is dangerous and must be left out. Well, the mind is dangerous, and must be left in.” — Robert Frost

“[The poem] begins in delight, it inclines to the impulse, it assumes direction with the first line laid down, it runs a course of lucky events, and ends in a clarification of life–not necessarily a great clarification, such as sects … Continue reading

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“Since when was genius found respectable?” – Elizabeth Barrett Browning

It’s her birthday today. I have a beautiful red-leather bound copy of The Complete Poetical Works of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, bought at a second-hand store. The publication date is 1882, with a foreword by Mrs. Browning herself. She died in … Continue reading

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“The people must grant a hearing to the best poets they have, else they will never have better.” — Harriet Monroe

“I started in early with Shakespeare, Byron, Shelley, with Dickens and Thackeray; and always the book-lined library gave me a friendly assurance of companionship with lively and interesting people, gave me friends of the spirit to ease my loneliness.” – … Continue reading

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“Omissions are not accidents.” — poet Marianne Moore

“I disliked the term “poetry” for any but Chaucer’s or Shakespeare’s or Dante’s.” — Marianne Moore T.S. Eliot felt Moore’s poetry was probably the “most durable” of all the greats writing at the time. Sadly, I have no idea how … Continue reading

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“Writing. Love is writing.” — poet H.D., HERmione

“Words were her plague and words were her redemption.” — H.D. HERmione It’s H.D.’s birthday today. First up: I wrote a gigantic piece about H.D.’s film criticism for Film Comment. Turns out, it was the final piece I wrote for … Continue reading

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“At last. At last America has discovered a poet.” — Ezra Pound on Edgar Lee Masters

Edgar Lee Masters (born on this day) was a lawyer (one of his law partners was Clarence Darrow!) and a poet. He published a couple of books and biographies (one of Walt Whitman, a poet he admired). He was no … Continue reading

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“Tennyson’s rank is too well fixed and we love him too much.” — Oscar Wilde

“He was not only a minor Virgil, he is also with Virgil as Dante saw him, a Virgil among the Shades, the saddest of all English poets.” – T.S. Eliot It’s Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s birthday, born on August 6, 1809. … Continue reading

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Rejoyce. It’s Bloomsday.

Some men send flowers to commemorate an anniversary. James Joyce wrote Ulysses. Overachiever. On June 15, 1904, young James Joyce sent a note to Nora Barnacle, who was a waitress at Finn’s Hotel. Barnacle (what an apt name) was a … Continue reading

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“Literature is the written expression of revolt against expected things.” Happy Birthday to the least happy man ever, Thomas Hardy

“A certain provincialism of feeling is invaluable. It is the essence of individuality, and is largely made up of that crude enthusiasm without which no great thoughts are thought, no great deeds done.” — Thomas Hardy That quote above from … Continue reading

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“[My ambition is to] give something to our literature which will be our own.” — Walt Whitman

“I like to think that eventually he will shame us into becoming Americans again.” — Guy Davenport on Walt Whitman Whitman is the organizing principle behind my review of Martin Scorsese’s Rolling Thunder Revue. Bob Dylan quotes Whitman all the … Continue reading

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