master the rules

November 13, 2016

I believe that every English poet should read the English classics, master the rules of grammar before he attempts to bend or break them, travel abroad, experience the horror of sordid passion and – if he is lucky enough – know the love of an honest woman.

Robert Graves
Lecture at Oxford as quoted in Time (15 December 1961).

an empty basket…

September 17, 2016


Poetry isn’t a profession, it’s a way of life. It’s an empty basket; you put your life into it and make something out of that.

Mary Oliver
Georgia Review, p. 733 (Winter 1981)