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The ultimate aim of a poet should be to touch our hearts by showing his own, and not to exhibit his learning, or his fine taste, or his skill in mimicking the notes of his predecessors. Thomas Hardy
The business of the poet and novelist is to show the sorriness underlying the grandest things, and the grandeur underlying the sorriest things. Thomas Hardy, notebook entry 19th April 1885
To find beauty in ugliness is the province of the poet. Thomas Hardy, cited Florence Hardy
Of course poets have morals and manners of their own, and custom is no argument with them. Thomas Hardy, The Hand of Ethelberta, 1876
What an extraordinary journey from a poor cottage in Dorset to being buried twice: once in Westminster Abbey with his coffin held aloft by Rudyard Kipling, the prime minister and once with his heart being buried in Dorset. Thomas Hardy: Fate, Exclusion & Tragedy, Sky Arts 2021
Hardy is irrevocably associated with his creation of the region of Wessex. ibid.
Dominated by a sense of being between classes, he loved London society but never felt part of it. ibid.
He found the cruelty of the world unbearable … But deep in his inner self, Thomas Hardy remained that raging wounded self who chastised the values of the world he inhabited. ibid.
Not everyone who drinks is a poet. Some of us drink because we’re not poets. Dudley Moore
As a poet and as a mathematician, he would reason well; as a mere mathematician, he could not have reasoned at all. Edgar Allan Poe, The Purloined Letter
Poetry, even when apparently most fantastic, is always a revolt against artifice, a revolt, in a sense, against actuality. It speaks of what seems fantastic and unreal to those who have lost the simple intuitions which are the test of reality; and, as it is often found at war with its age, so it makes no account of history, which is fabled by the daughters of memory. James Joyce
The stars are the souls of dead poets. Vincent van Gogh
Poetry surrounds us everywhere, but putting it on paper is, alas, not so easy as looking at it. Vincent van Gogh
The poet ranks far below the painter in the representation of visible things, and far below the musician in that of invisible things. Leonardo da Vinci
Her [Sapho] sacred poetry opens up a sensual remarkable world. Professor Bettany Hughes, Divine Women II: Handmaids of the Gods, BBC 2012
Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry. Cassandra Clare, Clockwork Angel
Poetry is not the most important thing in life ... I’d much rather lie in a hot bath reading Agatha Christie and sucking sweets. Dylan Thomas
I love this fabulous filthy city. Dylan Thomas: A Poet in New York, Dylan in back of cab, BBC 2014
What are you trying to do, Dylan, kill yourself? ibid. John
I thought I’d begin by reading a poem by Shakespeare, but then I thought, why should I? He never reads any of mine. Spike Milligan
And though poets I admire have published poems
Whose imperfections reflect our own decay,
I could never being a poem; ‘When I am dead’
In case it tempted Fate, and Fate gave way. Robert McGough, poem 1982
A man should hear a little music, read a little poetry, and see a fine picture every day of his life, in order that worldly cares may not obliterate the sense of the beautiful which God has implanted in the human soul. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
When many beauties grace a poem, I shall not take offence at a few faults. Horace, Ars Poetrica
‘Painters and poets alike have always had licence to dare anything.’ We know that, and we both claim and permit others this indulgence. ibid.
Not gods, nor men, nor even booksellers have put up with poets being second-rate. ibid.
No verse can give pleasure for long, nor last, that is written by drinkers of water. Horace, Epistles
Skilled or unskilled, we all scribble poems. ibid.
I have to put up with a lot, to please the touchy breed of poets. ibid.
Your poem was actually worse than Mrs Doyle’s. Father Ted s3e7: Night of the Nearly Dead, Dougal to Ted, Channel 4 1998
On no account should you allow a Vogon to read poetry to you. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy 2005 starring Martin Freeman & Sam Rockwell & Mos Def & Zooey Deschanel & Bill Nighy & Warwick Davis & Anna Chanccellor & John Malkovich & Kelly Macdonald et al, director Garth Jennings; see also novel Douglas Adams
Vogon poetry is widely accepted as the third worst in the universe. ibid.
I call it Ode to Spot. Star Trek: The Next Generation s6e5: Schisms
Write again, write again. I’m not dead yet. I’ve got weeks and weeks to live ... What a pity it is that we can’t change places for a fortnight. Here am I, aching for a quiet house to hide in and get poems off my chest. Siegfried Sassoon, letter to Robert Nichols
Hear the words I sing –
War’s a horrid thing.
So I sing sing sing
Ding-a-ling-a-ling. Blackadder Goes Forth: Plan F – Goodbyeee, Baldrick’s war poem, BBC 1989
I’ve written a poem and I think perhaps it might help you:
Sometimes it must be difficult
Not to feel as if
You really are a cliff.
When fascists keep trying to push you over it.
Are they the lemmings or are you, Cliff? The Young Ones s1e1: Demolition ***** writers Curtis & Elton et al, Rick to Neil, BBC 1982
Pollution. All around
But always – around.
Pollution. Are you coming to my town?
Or am I coming to yours?
Ha! We’re on different buses, Pollution.
But we’re both using petrol.
Bombs. The Young Ones s1e4: Bomb ***** Rick’s poem
Chaucer is the father of our poetry; Shakespeare is the father of our stage. Peter Ackroyd, The Lambs of London p35
If I had my life to live over again, I would have made a rule to read some poetry and listen to some music at least once every week. Charles Darwin, Autobiography
Poetry is a mirror which makes beautiful that which is distorted. Percy Bysshe Shelley