03 August 2010

dylan thomas, "on poetry"

I think that there's an inverted snobbery - and a suggestion of bad logic - in being proud of the fact that one's poems sell very badly. Of course, nearly every poet wants his poems to be read by as many people as possible. Craftsmen don't put their products in the attic. And contempt for the public, which is composed of potential readers, is contempt for the profound usefulness of your own craft. Go on thinking that you don't need to be read, and you'll find that it may become quite true: no one will feel the need to read it, because it is written for yourself alone, and the public won't feel any impulse to gate-crash such a private party.

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