In ‘A Poetics of Optics,’ Equi writes that ‘all images bank on alchemy.’ This idea captures her fundamental sense of poetry as turning common material into something rare and valuable.
God writes the Gospel not in the Bible alone, but also on trees, and in the flowers and clouds and stars.
In history, one gathers clues like a detective, tries to present an honest account of what most likely happened, and writes a narrative according to what we know and, where we aren’t absolutely sure, what might be most likely to have happened, within the generally accepted rules of evidence and sources.
I do not believe in pure idioms. I think there is naturally a desire, for whoever speaks or writes, to sign in an idiomatic, irreplaceable manner.
I’m not a writer who teaches. I’m a teacher who writes.
Through his long, productive career, Paul Theroux has mixed nonfiction books about exotic travel with novels set in exotic places. Africa, Singapore, Hong Kong, Honduras – he lives in and writes about places most of us never see.
The poet is like the earth’s shadow. The sun moves, and the poet writes something down.
It is no great art to say something briefly when, like Tacitus, one has something to say; when one has nothing to say, however, and none the less writes a whole book and makes truth into a liar – that I call an achievement.
A mediocre mind thinks it writes divinely; a good mind thinks it writes reasonably.
What I try to do is to go into a poem – and one writes them, of course, poem by poem – to go into each poem, first of all without having any sense whatsoever of where it’s going to end up.