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
  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.
Liked or faved by...
Other works by Marianne Moore...