Quotations From MARIANNE MOORE


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  • A writer is unfair to himself when he is unable to be hard on himself.
    Marianne Moore (1887-1972), U.S. poet. Interview in Writers at Work, Second Series, ed. George Plimpton (1963).
  • War is pillage versus resistance and if illusions of magnitude could be transmuted into ideals of magnanimity, peace might be realized.
    Marianne Moore (1887-1972), U.S. poet. repr. In Complete Prose (1987). "Comment," no. 86, Dial (New York, April 1929).

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  • Egotism is usually subversive of sagacity.
    Marianne Moore (1887-1972), U.S. poet. repr. In Complete Prose (1987). "Comment," Dial, no. 82 (New York, March 1927).
  • Poetry, that is to say the poetic, is a primal necessity.
    Marianne Moore (1887-1972), U.S. poet. first published in Dial, no. 81 (New York, Aug. 1926). "Comment," Complete Prose (1987).

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  • When one cannot appraise out of one's own experience, the temptation to blunder is minimized, but even when one can, appraisal seems chiefly useful as appraisal of the appraiser.
    Marianne Moore (1887-1972), U.S. poet. repr. In Complete Prose (1987). "Comment," Dial, no. 85 (New York, Oct. 1928).
  • I see no reason for calling my work poetry except that there is no other category in which to put it.
    Marianne Moore (1887-1972), U.S. poet. Quoted in New York Mirror (May 31, 1959). On accepting the National Book Award for poetry.

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