Saturday, February 11, 2006


'I like reading poetry at night — a doctor I know claims that this is because "poetry is the only thing you can read when you're drunk".'
— John Lanchester, The Sunday Times, 1 June 2003

'It would be hard to overstate the importance of the small magazine to the business of poetry... not only are they a space for new work, an arena for high-minded dispute and experiment, they also give poets a useful vanity mirror in which they can burnish their egos, as well as a forum to glad-hand their friends and pursue their vendettas.'
— Adam Newey, New Statesman, 23 June 2003

'The poem that refuses to risk sentimentality, that refuses to risk making a statement, is probably a poem that is going to feel lukewarm. So I'm in favor of work that if it fails, fails on the side of boldness, passion, intensity.'
— Mark Doty, The Charlotte Observer, 14 March 2003

'If you write about what you know, you will keep on writing the same thing, and you will never know any more than you do now.'
— George Bowering, quoted in The Iowa Review, Winter 2003/4

'I'm embarrassed to tell people, still, that I'm a poet... because I don't like poets. They're creeps. Some of my best friends are poets, but they're adult children, almost without exception. And the level of self-involvement is such that it's really a wonder, when they're stationary, the floorboards don't give way.'
— August Kleinzahler, Poets & Writers On-Line, October 2003

'We do not, on the whole, want our poets to be cuddly and approachable. We don't want to think of them buying toilet rolls at Tesco or filling out their tax returns. We want our poets to be brooding, Byronic, beautiful and preferably dead.'
— Christina Patterson, The Independent, 6 February 2004

'Unlike musicians, writers do not usually mature early. To write richly and well, they need to know something about the world and about ideas. And while students may profit from taking a creative writing class among their other courses, they need to learn about subjects like history, political science, and astronomy.'
— Timothy Steele, Contemporary Poetry Review, August 2005

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