10 Great Quotes About Poets, Poetry, and Writing by Nikki Giovanni


“Poetry and music are very good friends. Like mommies and daddies and strawberries and cream – they go together.”

“If everybody became a poet the world would be much better. We would all read to each other.”

“Nothing improves your writing, I think, as much as your keeping writing.”

“Poetry is the most mistaught subject in any school because we teach poetry by form and not by content.”

“Poems don’t have to rhyme… Poems are about beauty and emotion; in other words, poems are about feelings.”

“Poetry is the most informative of all of the arts because everything comes down to poetry. No matter what it is we are describing, ultimately we use either a metaphor; or we say “that’s poetry in motion.” You drink a glass of wine and say, “that’s poetry in a bottle.” Everything is poetry, so I think we come down to emotional information. And that’s what poetry conveys.”

“[To become a poet] The most important thing is to pay attention. The next would probably be to read; it’s so important to pay attention. It keeps you from being bored, and I might add it keeps you from being boorish.”

“We write because we believe the human spirit cannot be tamed and should not be trained.”

“The poet can only write the poems; it takes the reader to complete the meaning.”

“You must be unintimidated by your own thoughts because if you write with someone looking over your shoulder, you’ll never write.”

—Nikki Giovanni

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