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91,460. 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
83,367. The business of the poet and novelist is to show the sorriness underlying the grandest things, and the grandeur underlying the sorriest things. (Novel & Poetry) Thomas Hardy, notebook entry 19th April 1885
95,294. To find beauty in ugliness is the province of the poet. (Beauty & Poetry) Thomas Hardy, cited Florence Hardy
95,293. Of course poets have morals and manners of their own, and custom is no argument with them. (Custom & Poet) Thomas Hardy, The Hand of Ethelberta 1876
43,032. Not everyone who drinks is a poet. Some of us drink because we’re not poets. (Drink & Poetry) Dudley Moore
2,321. As a poet and as a mathematician, he would reason well; as a mere mathematician, he could not have reasoned at all. (Reason & Poetry & Mathematics) Edgar Allan Poe, The Purloined Letter
96,132. 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
3,456. The stars are the souls of dead poets. (Star & Soul & Poetry & Artists: Van Gogh) Vincent van Gogh
85,238. Poetry surrounds us everywhere, but putting it on paper is, alas, not so easy as looking at it. (Poetry & Artists: Van Gogh) Vincent van Gogh
85,284. 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
4,798. Her [Sapho] sacred poetry opens up a sensual remarkable world. (Woman & Poetry) Professor Bettany Hughes, Divine Women II: Handmaids of the Gods, BBC 2012
7,128. Only the very weak-minded refuse to be influenced by literature and poetry. (Read & Literature & Poetry) Cassandra Clare, Clockwork Angel
7,195. Poetry is not the most important thing in life ... I’d much rather lie in a hot bath reading Agatha Christie and sucking sweets. (Read & Book & Poetry) Dylan Thomas
7,212. I thought I’d begin by reading a poem by Shakespeare, but then I thought, why should I? He never reads any of mine. (Read & Poetry & Shakespeare) Spike Milligan
9,238. 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. (Death & Poetry & Fate) Robert McGough, 1982 poem
9,765. 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. (Art & Music & Poetry) Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
50,155. When many beauties grace a poem, I shall not take offence at a few faults. (Criticism & Poetry & Fault) Horace, Ars Poetrica
9,807. ‘Painters and poets alike have always had licence to dare anything.’ We know that, and we both claim and permit others this indulgence. (Art & Painting & Poetry) ibid.
85,315. Not gods, nor men, nor even booksellers have put up with poets being second-rate. ibid.
85,316. No verse can give pleasure for long, nor last, that is written by drinkers of water. Horace, Epistles
85,317. Skilled or unskilled, we all scribble poems. ibid.
85,318. I have to put up with a lot, to please the touchy breed of poets. ibid.
13,188. Your poem was actually worse than Mrs Doyle’s. (Comedy & Catholic & Priest & Island Poetry) Father Ted s3e7: Night of the Nearly Dead, Dougal to Ted
23,693. On no account should you allow a Vogon to read poetry to you. (Science Fiction Films & Poetry) 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
23,694. Vogon poetry is widely accepted as the third worst in the universe. (Science Fiction Films & Poetry) ibid.
24,449. I call it Ode to Spot. (Star Trek: The Next Generation & Poetry) Star Trek: The Next Generation: Schisms s6e5
26,188. 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. (World War I & Write & Poetry) Siegfried Sassoon, letter to Robert Nichols
26,470. Hear the words I sing –
War’s a horrid thing.
So I sing sing sing
Ding-a-ling-a-ling. (World War I & Poetry & War) Blackadder Goes Forth: Plan F – Goodbyeee, Baldrick’s war poem
43,048. 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? (Comedy & Poetry) The Young Ones: Demolition **** writers Curtis & Elton et al, Rick to Neil, BBC 1982
43,070. 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. (Comedy & Pollution & Poetry) The Young Ones: Bomb ***** Rick’s poem
45,721. Chaucer is the father of our poetry; Shakespeare is the father of our stage. (Stage & Poetry) Peter Ackroyd, The Lambs of London p35
46,257. 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. (Music & Poetry) Charles Darwin, Autobiography
47,605. Poetry is a mirror which makes beautiful that which is distorted. (Beauty & Poetry) Percy Bysshe Shelley
85,279. Chameleons feed on light and air:
Poets’ food is love and fame. Percy Bysshe Shelley, An Exhortation 1820
85,280. Most wretched men
Are cradled into poetry by wrong:
They learn in suffering what they teach in song. Percy Bysshe Shelley, Julian and Maddalo 1818
85,281. You will see Coleridge – he who sits obscure,
In the exceeding lustre and the pure
Intense irradiation of a mind,
Which, with its own internal lightning blind,
Flags wearily through darkness and despair –
A cloud-encircled meteor of the air,
A hooded eagle among blinking owls. Percy Bysshe Shelley, letter to Maria Gisborne 1820
85,282. The great instrument of moral good is the imagination; and poetry administers to the effect by acting on the cause. Percy Bysshe Shelley, A Defence of Poetry
85,283. Poetry is the record of the best and happiest moments of the happiest and best minds. ibid.
85,338. The most unfailing herald, companion and follower of a great people to work a beneficial change in opinion or institution, is poetry. At such periods as this, there is an accumulation of the power of communicating and receiving intense and impassioned conceptions respecting man and nature. ibid.