Heart Happy (cathy_edgett) wrote,
Heart Happy

Stanley Kunitz -

You can read a wonderful interview with the poet Stanley Kunitz here:


He was in his seventies at the time of the interview. I offer a few enticements.

"At my age, after you're done - or ruefully think you're done - with the nagging anxieties and complications of your youth, what is there left to confront but the great simplicities? I never tired of birdsong and sky and weather. I want to write poems that are natural, luminous, deep, spare. I dream of an art so transparent that you can look through and see the world."

from the poem Science of the Night:

"We are not souls but systems, and we move
In clouds of our unknowing."

"We have to learn to live with our frailities. The best people I know are inadequate and unashamed."

"Rhythm to me, I suppose, is essentially what Hopkins called the taste of self. I taste myself as rhythm."

"The language of a poem must do more than convey experience. It must embody it."

"It always haunts me that human beings were accumulating experience and knowledge in their bodies before they had a language. That's where our oldest wisdom is. The language of the imagination is a body language. That is why poetry is resistant to abstractions."

Pasteur said that "Chance favors only the prepared mind."

"During sleep the brain deposits calcium faster than when its unconscious."

He speaks of evil and concludes:

"Perhaps the way to cope with the adversary is to confront him in ourselves. We have to fight for our little bit of health. We have to make our living and dying important again. And then living and dying of others. Isn't that what poetry is about?"


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