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    a. r. ammons Quotes

    Questions structure and, so, to some extent predetermine answers.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: questions 
     
    If we ask a vague question, such as, 'What is poetry?' we expect a vague answer, such as, 'Poetry is the music of words,' or 'Poetry is the linguistic correction of disorder.'
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: questions  music  poetry  vague 
     
    A poem generated by its own laws may be unrealized and bad in terms of so-called objective principles of taste, judgement, deduction.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: law  judgement  bad  poem 
     
    The poet exposes himself to the risk. All that has been said about poetry, all that he has learned about poetry, is only a partial assurance.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: risk  poetry  poet 
     
    Is it not careless to become too local when there are four hundred billion stars in our galaxy alone.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: star  alone 
     
    To be saved is here, local and mortal
    — A. R. Ammons
    Where but in the very asshole of comedown is redemption: as where but brought low, where but in the grief of failure, loss, error do we discern the savage afflictions that turn us around: where but in the arrangements love crawls us through
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: failure  grief  loss  savage 
     
    The wonderful workings of the world: wonderful,wonderful: I'm surprised half the time
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: time 
     
    Attend to mushrooms and all other things will answer up.
    — A. R. Ammons
    the walk liberating, I was released from forms, from the perpendiculars, straight lines, blocks, boxes, binds of thought into the hues, shadings, rises, flowing bends and blends of sight ...
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: thoughts 
     
    Besides the actual reading in class of many poems, I would suggest you do two things: first, while teaching everything you can and keeping free of it, teach that poetry is a mode of discourse that differs from logical exposition
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: teaching  reading  poetry  poem 
     
    Probably all the attention to poetry results in some value, though the attention is more often directed to lesser than to greater values
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: value  attention  poetry 
     
    For though we often need to be restored to the small, concrete, limited, and certain, we as often need to be reminded of the large, vague, unlimited, unknown
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: vague 
     
    Once every five hundred years or so, a summary statement about poetry comes along that we can't imagine ourselves living without
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: living  poetry  year  imagine 
     
    I must stress here the point that I appreciate clarity, order, meaning, structure, rationality: they are necessary to whatever provisional stability we have, and they can be the agents of gradual and successful change.
    — A. R. Ammons
    Thats a wonderful change thats taken place, and so most poetry today is published, if not directly by the person, certainly by the enterprise of the poet himself, working with his friends.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: people  friends  poetry  poet 
     
    If the greatest god is the stillness all the motions add up to, then we must ineluctably be included.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: god 
     
    Things go away to return, brightened for the passage
    — A. R. Ammons
    In nature there are few sharp lines
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: nature 
     
    One can't have it both ways and both ways is the only way I want it.
    — A. R. Ammons
    Poetry leads us to the unstructured sources of our beings, to the unknown, and returns us to our rational, structured selves refreshed.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: self  poetry 
     
    You have your identity when you find out, not what you can keep your mind ON, but what you can't keep your mind OFF.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: identity  mind 
     
    Though I have looked everywhere / I can find nothing lowly / in the universe.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: universe 
     
    Anything looked at closely becomes wonderful.
    — A. R. Ammons
    Only silence perfects silence.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: silence 
     
    I have a life that did not become,that turned aside and stopped,astonished
    — A. R. Ammons
    If a poem is each time new, then it is necessarily an act of discovery, a chance taken, a chance that may lead to fulfillment or disaster
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: chance  time  discovery  poem 
     
    I have reached no conclusions, have erected no boundaries,shutting out and shutting in, separating insidefrom outside: I havedrawn no lines
    — A. R. Ammons
    The white sun like a moth on a string circles the southpole.
    — A. R. Ammons
    With the first step, the number of shapes the walk might take is infinite, but then the walk begins to define itself as it goes along, though freedom remains total with each step: any tempting side road can be turned into an impulse, or any wild patch of woods can be explored. The pattern of the walk is to come true, is to be recognized, discovered.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: freedom  true  wild 
     
    I can't tell you where a poem comes from, what it is, or what it is for: nor can any other man. The reason I can't tell you is that the purpose of a poem is to go past telling, to be recognised by burning.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: men  past  poem 
     
    Even if you walk exactly the same route each time - as with a sonnet - the events along the route cannot be imagined to be the same from day to day, as the poet's health, sight, his anticipations, moods, fears, thoughts cannot be the same.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: fear  health  time  thoughts  poet  mood 
     
    I am grateful for - though I can't keep up with - the flood of articles, theses, and textbooks that mean to share insight concerning the nature of poetry.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: nature  insight  poetry  shares 
     
    Everything is discursive opinion instead of direct experience.
    — A. R. Ammons
    There's something to be said in favor of working in isolation in the real world.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: world  real 
     
    I take the walk to be the externalization of an interior seeking so that the analogy is first of all between the external and the internal.
    — A. R. Ammons
    Each poem in becoming generates the laws by which it is generated: extensions of the laws to other poems never completely take.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: law  poem 
     
    It's not a love of poetry readings that attracts those who do come to them but theater.
    — A. R. Ammons
    tags: reading  poetry 
     
    Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.
    — A. R. Ammons
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