Poetry has a profound effect on all those that embrace it. The poets that I listed below have valuable advice and insights for writers. I hope that these quotes can inspire.
“We must create work that refuses to leave this world the same as when we entered. We do not have the luxury of only writing the selfish confession, we must testify in our court of craft that these poems we write are bold, unflinching, and unwilling to stale idle in a geography of madness. We must demand of ourselves to write the uncomfortable, dangerous, shift-making poems.” -Danez Smith (Open Letter to White Poets)
“In my poetry, I see a connection between politics and language, although I wonder if it’s a political act. I think of political action as looking forward, whereas language in poetry, since it’s such a glacial process anyways, is an act of reflection rather than an instrument for forward-thinking change. Poets commit political acts by what they do on the side.” -Cathy Park Hong (Poets and Writers)
“Both the poet and scholar are trying to learn something. The poem for me is a pursuit. Some of the answers are within. Some of the answers are without.” -Gregory Pardlo (Goodreads)
“Trouble is one of the ways we discover the complexities of the soul.” -Terrance Hayes (How to be Drawn)
“That’s the hard but important thing: if you seed enough you have to be willing to yank the weeds. And even a plant that’s too close to the house or whatever. Sometimes these stray things have later lives, but not always. One day some may see the light.” -Kevin Young (Fail Better)
Happy National Poetry Month! Keep writing!
Denise Nichole Andrews