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Instead of trying to come up and pontificate on what literature is, you need to talk with children, to teachers, and make sure they get poetry in the curriculum early.
In working on a poem, I love to revise. Lots of younger poets don't enjoy this, but in the process of revision I discover things.
If we really want to be full and generous in spirit, we have no choice but to trust at some level.
If they don't read, if they don't love reading; if they don't find themselves compulsively reading, I don't think they're really a writer.
I write short stories, and I wrote a play.
I was apprehensive. I feared every time I talked about poetry, it would be filtered through the lens of race, sex, and age.
I was appointed Poet Laureate. It came totally out of the blue because most Poet Laureates had been considerably older than I. It was not something that I even had begun to dream about!
I try to show what it is about language and music that enthralls, because I think those are the two elements of poetry.
I thought, after the Pulitzer, at least nothing will surprise me quite that much in my life. And another one happened. It was quite amazing.
I think reading Shakespeare's plays when I was young was extremely important. He had the ability to make utter strangers come alive.
I think children have talent and insight, but it gets beaten out of them.
I see a resurgence of interest in poetry. I am less optimistic about the prospects for the arts when it comes to federal funding.
I prefer to explore the most intimate moments, the smaller, crystallized details we all hinge our lives on.
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