20 Poets on the Meaning of Poetry


Edith Sitwell

“Poetry is the deification of reality.”

Marianne Moore

“Poetry is the art of creating imaginary gardens with real toads.”

Theodore Roethke

“You must believe: a poem is a holy thing — a good poem, that is.”

“The poem, even a short time after being written, seems no miracle; unwritten, it seems something beyond the capacity of the gods.”

James K. Baxter

“The poem is a plank laid over the lion’s den.”