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More poems by Marianne MooreMarianne Moore | Print this page.Print | View and Write CommentsComments (7) | Books by Marianne MooreBooks by Marianne Moore

Poetry

Marianne Moore

I, too, dislike it: there are things that are important beyond all 
   this fiddle.
  Reading it, however, with a perfect contempt for it, one 
     discovers in
  it after all, a place for the genuine.
   Hands that can grasp, eyes
   that can dilate, hair that can rise
     if it must, these things are important not because a

high-sounding interpretation can be put upon them but because
   they are
  useful.  When they become so derivative as to become 
     unintelligible,  
  the same thing may be said for all of us, that we
   do not admire what
   we cannot understand: the bat
     holding on upside down or in quest of something to

eat, elephants pushing, a wild horse taking a roll, a tireless wolf
   under
  a tree, the immovable critic twitching his skin like a horse that
     feels a
   flea, the base-
  ball fan, the statistician--
  nor is it valid
     to discriminate against 'business documents and

school-books'; all these phenomena are important.  One must
   make a distinction
  however: when dragged into prominence by half poets, the
     result is not poetry,
  nor till the poets among us can be
   'literalists of 
   the imagination'--above
     insolence and triviality and can present

for inspection, 'imaginary gardens with real toads in them', shall
   we have
  it.  In the meantime, if you demand on the one hand,
  the raw material of poetry in
   all its rawness and
   that which is on the other hand
     genuine, you are interested in poetry.

Added: 25 Feb 2002 | Last Read: 21 Jan 2018 5:36 AM | Viewed: 19210 times

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URL: http://plagiarist.com/poetry/2963/ | Viewed on 21 January 2018.
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