10 Great Quotes About Poets and Poetry by T. S. Eliot

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“Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion; it is not the expression of personality, but an escape from personality. But, of course, only those who have personality and emotions know what it means to want to escape from these things.”

“The poet’s mind is in fact a receptacle for seizing and storing up numberless feelings, phrases, images, which remain there until all the particles which can unite to form a new compound are present together.”

“Genuine poetry can communicate before it is understood.”

“Poetry may make us from time to time a little more aware of the deeper, unnamed feelings which form the substratum of our being, to which we rarely penetrate; for our lives are mostly a constant evasion of ourselves.”

“Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal.”

“The bad poet is usually unconscious where he ought to be conscious, and conscious where he ought to be unconscious.”

“Not only every great poet, but every genuine, but lesser poet, fulfils once for all some possibility of language, and so leaves one possibility less for his successors.”

“What a poem means is as much what it means to others as what it means to the author; and indeed, in the course of time a poet may become merely reader in respect to his own works, forgetting his original meaning.”

“Poetry is a mug’s game.”

“When a great poet has lived, certain things have been done once for all, and cannot be achieved again.”

– T.S. Eliot

5 thoughts on “10 Great Quotes About Poets and Poetry by T. S. Eliot

  1. i don’t profess to know anything about poetry at all, i read a few but i cant understand most of them but i do enjoy reading the words put forward, words i have never heard of or probably would never use either, i do enjoy learning though..

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Steve, thank you so much for reading and liking this post. T.S. Eliot is probably one of the. most difficult poets. I have been studying poetry for years, and I am still not sure if I properly understand the meaning of all his quotes. Yet Istill enjoy reading them.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I love T.S.Eliot! He is sp right in all he says about poetry. Read so many poems like “The Waste Land”, “Burnt Norton”, some of my favorites. Also love how he cleverly got influenced by Dante Alighieri’s “Divine Comedy”, one of the best poems ever, a jewel.

    Liked by 1 person

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