A Few Minutes with Theodore Roethke
I am a poet: I am always hungry.
There are so many ways of going to pot as a poet; so many
pitfalls, so many snares and delusions.
I used to think of poets as helping one another; as advancing
"You try to tell us in shorthand; we don't even know longhand."
Swallow or strangle is my method.
O the enormous folly of words.
Move over, sensitive sad minds.
Live in a perpetual great astonishment.
-Theodore Roethke, "The Poet's Business: Selected Notebook Entries (1943-1947)" in On Poetry & Craft (Copper Canyon Press, 2001), p. 85.