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Poetry; a criticism of life under the conditions fixed
by Matthew Arnold

Poetry; a criticism of life under the conditions fixed
for such a criticism by the laws of poetic truth and poetic beauty.
- Matthew Arnold

Use your gifts faithfully, and they shall be enlarged;
practice what you know,
and you shall attain to higher knowledge.
- Matthew Arnold

Resolve to be thyself: and know that he who finds himself,
loses his misery.
- Matthew Arnold

The true meaning of religion is thus,
not simply morality, but morality touched by emotion.
- Matthew Arnold

 

The pursuit of perfection, then, is the pursuit of sweetness and light.
- Matthew Arnold

Our society distributes itself into Barbarians,
Philistines and Populace; and America is just ourselves
with the Barbarians quite left out,
and the Populace nearly.
- Matthew Arnold

For the creation of a masterwork of literature two powers must concur,
the power of the man and the power of the moment,
and the man is not enough without the moment.
- Matthew Arnold

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Culture is properly described as the love of perfection;
it is a study of perfection.
- Matthew Arnold

The freethinking of one age is the common sense of the next.
- Matthew Arnold

Because thou must not dream, thou need not despair.
- Matthew Arnold

Culture is to know the best that has been said and thought in the world.
- Matthew Arnold

France, famed in all great arts, in none supreme.
- Matthew Arnold

Sad Patience, too near neighbour to despair.
- Matthew Arnold

Greatness is a spiritual condition.
- Matthew Arnold

And we forget because we must and not because we will.
- Matthew Arnold

Poetry is simply the most beautiful,
impressive,
and widely effective mode of saying things.
- Matthew Arnold

Not a having and a resting, but a growing and becoming,
is the character of perfection as culture conceives it.
- Matthew Arnold

It is almost impossible to exaggerate the proneness
of the human mind to take miracles as evidence,
and to seek for miracles as evidence.
- Matthew Arnold

Nature, with equal mind, Sees all her sons at play,
Sees man control the wind, The wind sweep man away.
- Matthew Arnold

Home of lost causes, and forsaken beliefs,
and unpopular names, and impossible loyalties!
- Matthew Arnold

To have the sense of creative activity is the great
happiness and the great proof of being alive.
- Matthew Arnold

Still bent to make some port he knows not where,
still standing for some false impossible shore.
- Matthew Arnold

Journalism is literature in a hurry.
- Matthew Arnold

Bald as the bare mountain tops are bald,
with a baldness full of grandeur.
- Matthew Arnold

Conduct is three-fourths of our life and its largest concern.
- Matthew Arnold

Truth sits upon the lips of dying men.
- Matthew Arnold

Spare me the whispering, crowded room,
the friends who come and gape and go,
the ceremonious air of gloom - all, which makes death a hideous show.
- Matthew Arnold

Waiting for the spark from heaven to fall.
- Matthew Arnold

It is so small a thing to have enjoyed the sun,
to have lived light in the spring, to have loved,
to have thought, to have done.
- Matthew Arnold

The need of expansion is as genuine an instinct in
man as the need in a plant for the light,
or the need in man himself for going upright.
The love of liberty is simply the instinct in man for expansion.
- Matthew Arnold

If a man is called to be a street sweeper,
he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted,
or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry.
He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts
of heaven and earth will pause to say,
here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.

Youth, large, lusty, loving -
Youth, full of grace, force, fascination.
Do you know that Old Age may come after you
with equal grace, force, fascination?
- Walt Whitman

Poetry should...
should strike the reader as a wording of his own highest thoughts,
and appear almost a remembrance.
- John Keats

Everything one invents is true, you may be perfectly sure of that.
Poetry is as precise as geometry.
- Gustave Flaubert

Sometimes poetry is inspired by the conversation entered
into by reading other poems.
- John Barton

Poetry is an orphan of silence.
The words never quite equal the experience behind them.
- Charles Simic

Poetry is plucking at the heartstrings,
and making music with them.
- Dennis Gabor

Poetry is all that is worth remembering in life.
- William Hazlitt

A poet's autobiography is his poetry.
Anything else is just a footnote.
- Yevgeny Yevtushenko

Breathe-in experience, breathe-out poetry.
- Muriel Rukeyser

The River of Life has no judgments.
The River flows with no concept of good and bad - right and wrong.
The fields and dreams of men may be nourished by the River of Life,
or flooded and covered with silt, and the River just flows.
Men may catch fish and live on the River of Life,
or they may founder in a storm and drown, and the River just flows.
The River of Life is timeless.
It is not unchanging, but it is timeless,
and it changes in its own time.
The River of Life knows no obstacles.
The River can cut through solid rock - in its own time.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Poetry is what gets lost in translation.
- Robert Frost

Poetry is just the evidence of life.
If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash.
- Leonard Cohen

Poetry is the art of creating imaginary gardens with real toads.
- Marianne Moore

Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance.
- Carl Sandburg

Poetry is a deal of joy and pain and wonder,
with a dash of the dictionary.
- Khalil Gibran

There's no money in poetry, but then there's no poetry in money,
either.
- Robert Graves

There is poetry as soon as we realize that we possess nothing.
- John Cage

One merit of poetry few persons will deny:
it says more and in fewer words than prose.
- Voltaire

Poetry is thoughts that breathe, and words that burn.
- Thomas Gray

The River of Life flows without emotion.
The River surges. The River quiets.
The River overflows its banks. The River dries to a trickle.
The River swirls and storms. The River becomes calm.
The River runs clear. The River runs dark with silt.
The River is indifferent to what benefit
or what harm is caused by its water.
The River is the River, and that is all there is to it.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

The River of Life has no meaning, no good, no bad,
no better, no worse, no love, no hate, no fear, no anger, no joy.
The River of Life has no judgment, no expectation.
The River of Life just IS. There is nothing to do.
There is nothing to say.
There is nothing to think.
There is nothing to feel.
The River just flows. The River is the source of all nourishment -
the source of all obstacles.
The River is the source of all life - the source of all death.
The River is the source of all joy - and the source of all sorrow.
Yet the River has no joy - and the River has no sorrow.
The River is just the River.
One can flow harmoniously with the River -
or one can struggle fearfully against the River -
and the River just flows.
One can accept the River - or one can deny the River -
and the River just flows.
One can worship the River of Life - or one can curse the River of Life -
and the River just flows. There is nothing to do - and the River flows.
There is nothing to say - and the River flows.
There is nothing to think - and the River flows.
There is nothing to feel - and the River flows.
The River flows - and all else is our drama.
The River flows - and all else is our invention.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Genuine poetry can communicate before it is understood.
- T. S. Eliot

Poetry is language at its most distilled and most powerful.
- Rita Dove

All bad poetry springs from genuine feeling.
- Oscar Wilde

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

Poetry: the best words in the best order.
- Samuel Taylor Coleridge

To see clearly is poetry, prophecy and religion all in one.
- John Ruskin

Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks.
- Plutarch

You will find poetry nowhere unless you bring some of it with you.
- Joseph Joubert

Poetry is the opening and closing of a door,
leaving those who look through to guess about what
is seen during the moment.
- Carl Sandburg

Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and
the thought has found words.
- Robert Frost

Poetry is the synthesis of hyacinths and biscuits.
- Carl Sandburg

Poetry is the rhythmical creation of beauty in words.
- Edgar Allan Poe

He who draws noble delights from sentiments of poetry is a true poet,
though he has never written a line in all his life.
- George Sand

Poetry heals the wounds inflicted by reason.
- Novalis

Poetry is nearer to vital truth than history.
- Plato

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

Poetry is a mirror which makes beautiful that which is distorted.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley

Poetry is ordinary language raised to the Nth power.
Poetry is boned with ideas, nerved and blooded with emotions,
all held together by the delicate, tough skin of words.
- Paul Engle

Poetry is the revelation of a feeling that the poet
believes to be interior and personal which the reader recognizes as his own.
- Salvatore Quasimodo


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- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

 


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