American Expatriate Poet and Critic
Ezra Pound, fully Ezra Weston Loomis Pound
American Expatriate Poet and Critic
At about this point the weak-hearted reader usually sits down in the road, removes his shoes and weeps that he 'is a bad linguist' or that he or she can't possibly learn all those languages. One has to divide the readers who want to be experts from those who do not, and divide, as it were, those who want to see the world from those who merely want to know what part of it they live in.
Here is a dirty book worth reading ... a bawdy which will be very useful to put Wyndham and J.J. into their proper cubby holes; cause Miller is sore and without kinks.
If anybody ever shuts you in Indiana...and you don't at least write some unconstrained something or other, I give up hope for your salvation.
M'amour, m'amour. What do I love and where are you? That I lost my center fighting the world. The Dreams clash and are shattered-and that I tried to make a paradise terrestre. I have tried to write Paradise. Do not move. Let the wind speak. That is paradise. Let the Gods forgive what I have made. Let those I love try to forgive what I have made.
One discards rhyme, not because one is incapable of rhyming neat, fleet, sweet, meet, treat, eat, feet but because there are certain emotions or energies which are nor represented by the over-familiar devices or patterns.
Technique is the test of sincerity. If a thing isn't worth getting the technique to say, it is of inferior value.
The man of understanding can no more sit quiet and resigned while his country lets literature decay than a good doctor could sit quiet and contented while some ignorant child was infecting itself with tuberculosis under the impression that it was merely eating jam tarts.
There is no topic ... more soporific and generally boring than the topic of Ireland as Ireland, as a nation.
When words cease to cling close to things, kingdoms fall, empires wane and diminish.
Beauty is only a breath between two plates.
Humanity is the rich effluvium, it is the waste and the manure and the soil, and from it grows the tree of the arts.
If Ford Madox Ford were placed stark naked in a room totally empty he would contrive to turn it into a mess.
Man is an over-complicated organism. If he is doomed to extinction he will die out for want of simplicity.
One measure of a civilization, either of an age or of a single individual, is what that age or person really wishes to do. A man's hope measures his civilization. The attainability of the hope measures, or may measure, the civilization of his nation and time.
The act of bell ringing is symbolic of all proselytizing religions. It implies the pointless interference with the quiet of other people.
The modern artist must live by craft and violence. His gods are violent gods. Those artists, so called, whose work does not show this strife, are uninteresting.
There is the subtler music, the clear light where time burns back about th'eternal embers. We are not shut from the thousand heavens: Lo, there are many gods whom we have seen, folk of unearthly fashion, places splendid, bulwarks of beryl and of chrysophrase. Sapphire Benacus, in thy mists and thee Nature herself's turned metaphysical, who can look at that blue and not believe?
When you cannot make up your mind which of two evenly balanced courses of action you should take - choose the bolder.
But the one thing you shd. not do is suppose that when something is wrong with the arts, it is wrong with the arts ONLY.
I consider criticism merely a preliminary excitement, a statement of things a writer has to clear up in his own head sometime or other, probably antecedent to writing; of no value unless it come to fruit in the created work later.
If I could believe the Quakers banned music because church music is so damn bad, I should view them with approval.
Man reading ought to be a man intensely alive. The book ought to be a ball of light in his hands.
Pay no attention to the criticism of men who have never themselves written a notable work.
The apparition of these faces in the crowd; petals on a wet black bough.