Jack Gilbert

(1925 - / Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)

Poetry Is A Kind Of Lying - Poem by Jack Gilbert

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.

Topic(s) of this poem: poetry

Comments about Poetry Is A Kind Of Lying by Jack Gilbert

  • Susan Williams (1/28/2018 2:54:00 PM)

    Because PH is annoying me I shall try annoying it back by repeatedly saying: It is really tiresome that I and perhaps you cannot rate poems anymore because some messed up computer thingee can only respond to a vote by demanding we sign in again and again and again. Really getting tiresome. Neither can I track down the comments that notifications to my e-mail tell me about. (Report) Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Susan Williams (1/28/2018 2:53:00 PM)

    But if I don't lie than the wind becomes just an item on the weather station that states it is coming out of the southwest at 15 mph. My goodness, facts like that just reaches out and grabs us by the heartstrings and twirls us around the room in an ecstasy of excitement. Scientific treatises make me feel so... so... so lying in the street run-over dead. I think I am posting this comment as a poem... ;) But then again I might be lying. (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (1/28/2018 2:52:00 PM)

    Hmmm....Jack Gilbert says Poetry is a kind of lying. Well, tis true that a lot of exaggeration goes into some poetry- we don't really die of a broken heart [it just feels that way]. And if I say the wind is a large and growly bear than I am most certainly lying my head off [an absurd phrase if there ever was]. (Report) Reply

Read all 3 comments »

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

Poem Submitted: Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Famous Poems

  1. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  5. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  6. Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
    Mary Elizabeth Frye
  9. I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love You
    Pablo Neruda
  10. Television
    Roald Dahl
[Report Error]