10 Great Quotes About Poets, Poetry, and Writing by Kenneth Koch

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“I’m a writer who likes to be influenced.”

“I thought, There are a lot of poets who have the courage to look into the abyss, but there are very few who have the courage to look happiness in the face and write about it,’ which is what I wanted to be able to do.”

“Poetry is a deliberate attempt to make language suggestive and imprecise.”

“One day the Nouns were clustered in the street.
An Adjective walked by, with her dark beauty.
The Nouns were struck, moved, changed.
The next day a Verb drove up, and created the Sentence.”

“All poetry comes from repetition.”

“When you finish a poem, it clicks shut like the top of a jewel box, but prose is endless. I haven’t experienced an awful lot of clicking shut!

As for political poetry, as it’s usually defined, it seems there’s very little good political poetry.”

“You can’t be too influenced by a great poet. You simply have to live through it.”

“Poetry, which is written while no one is looking, is meant to be looked at for all time.”

“When you get an idea, go and write. Don’t waste it in conversation.”

— Kenneth Koch

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9 thoughts on “10 Great Quotes About Poets, Poetry, and Writing by Kenneth Koch

  1. Thank you, I think so too. Not only was Kenneth Koch an amazing poet but a fantastic teacher of poetry to children as well. His book “Wishes, Lies, and Dreams: Teaching Children to Write Poetry” is one of my favorites on the subject. I feel so lucky that I was able to meet and hear him read a few years before he passed away.

    Like

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