10 Great Quotes About Poets, Poetry, and Writing by Ted Kooser

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“A poem is the record of a discovery, either the discovery of something in the world, or within one’s self, or perhaps the discovery of something through the juxtaposition of sounds and sense within our language. Our job as poets is to set down the record of those discoveries in such a way that our readers will make the discoveries theirs and will delight in them.”

“Any well-made poem is worth a whole lot more to the world than the person who wrote it.”

“The poem is the device through which the ordinary world is seen in a new way – engaging, compelling, even beautiful.”

“There’s nothing wrong with delighting in what you do. In fact, most of the fun you’ll have as a poet will come about during the process of writing.”

“Keeping a journal is like taking good care of one’s heart.”

“There are those who think poets are more sensitive than other people, more keenly aware of the world, but most of the poets I now are just as oblivious to what’s happening around them as is the rest of the population.”

“I farm a little plot of things to say, with not much frontage on the busy road.”

“I like the poem on the page and not at the podium. I like to address the poem in peace and quiet, not on the edge of a folding chair with a full bladder.”

“In my work, I really try to look at ordinary things quite closely to see if there isn’t a little bit of something special about them. I’m trying to make something as nearly perfect as I can out of words.”

“Valentine’s Day is the poet’s holiday.”

—Ted Kooser