A poet's work is to name the unnameable, to point at frauds, to take sides, start arguments, shape the world, and stop it going to sleep.

Salman Rushdie
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A true poet does not bother to be poetical. Nor does a nursery gardener scent his roses.

Jean Cocteau
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All bad poetry springs from genuine feeling.

Oscar Wilde
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Always be a poet, even in prose.

Charles Baudelaire
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Any healthy man can go without food for two days - but not without poetry.

Charles Baudelaire
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Breathe-in experience, breathe-out poetry.

Muriel Rukeyser
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Children and lunatics cut the Gordian knot which the poet spends his life patiently trying to untie.

Jean Cocteau
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Each memorable verse of a true poet has two or three times the written content.

Alfred de Musset
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Each word bears its weight, so you have to read my poems quite slowly.

Anne Stevenson
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Even when poetry has a meaning, as it usually has, it may be inadvisable to draw it out... Perfect understanding will sometimes almost extinguish pleasure.

A. E. Housman
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