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Jack Gilbert - Poetry Is A Kind Of Lying

Poetry is a kind of lying,
necessarily. To profit the poet
or beauty. But also in
that truth may be told only so.

Those who, admirably, refuse
to falsify (as those who will not
risk pretensions) are excluded
from saying even so much.

Degas said he didn't paint
what he saw, but what
would enable them to see
the thing he had.

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Added: May 22 2003 | Viewed: 458 times | Comments and analysis of Poetry Is A Kind Of Lying by Jack Gilbert Comments (2)

Poetry Is A Kind Of Lying - Comments and Information

Poet: Jack Gilbert
Poem: Poetry Is A Kind Of Lying
Volume: Monolithos
Year: Published/Written in 1962

Comment 2 of 2, added on June 4th, 2005 at 1:32 AM.

Yes, Gilbert rightly belongs in that brave category of poets who eschew 'ancillary profit'; he is a true poet. And he reminds me of the desert mystic, his illusions burned clean, purified, with only the single last delusion left.

Rob from China
Comment 1 of 2, added on February 3rd, 2005 at 7:54 PM.

A wonderful poem! A person who does not lie, exaggerate or curry-flavour, has no choice but be silent!

Rao from United States

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