Aphorisms, sayings, and all that

The end of the quarter is here. My last day of teaching is this coming Thursday. The students are fried. I'm fried. I'm ready to begin some summer writing projects.

Jenni tagged me with a task that may help me kick start some writing:

“Give us at least 10 quotations pertaining to poetry - from 10 different writers &/or poets which best coincide with your philosophy vis a vis ars poetica. They can be posthumous or otherwise. The order is not important - unless it is to you.”

1. "Never put peeing elephants on opposing pages." Norman Dubie

2. "X. . . would like one to believe that a metaphor is a communication from heaven.
A metaphor is what happens when one looks in a certain way, just as a sneeze is what happens when one looks at the sun.
In what way? --You can feel it. One day, perhaps one will be able to say it precisely.
Do this and do that--and behold all the metaphors in the world . . ." Paul Valery

3. "I'm in the business of translating what cannot be translated: being and its silence." Charles Simic

4. "Worry is mental erosion, a disease like leprosy upon consciousness, contagious and ultimately, to the imagination, fatal." Garret Hongo

5. "When people praise a poem that I can't understand I always think they're lying." Stephen Dunn

6. "The truly new always looks truly wrong." Alice Fulton

7. "Most of my life has been spent not understanding, and I can assure you, it was not easy." Rilke

8. "My sins are not important." Theodore Roethke

9. "Many American poets seem to feel personally worthless unless they write. One can easily imagine that, given the conditions of the mind, the feelings of worthlessness may become indistinguishable from the impulse to write." Richard Hugo

10. "Our deepest wish is to prevent time." David Baker

And I hereby tag Mary B., Barbara Jane, CDY, Paul, and Corny.

Oliver de la Paz