Tuesday, June 30, 2015

T.S. Eliot on What Poets Have to Give Besides Pleasure

"I suppose it will be agreed that every good poet, whether he be a great poet or not, has something to give us besides pleasure: for if it were only pleasure, the pleasure itself could not be of the highest kind. Beyond any specific intention which poetry may have, such as I have already instanced in the various kinds of poetry, there is always the communication of some new experience, or some fresh understanding of the familiar, or the expression of something we have experienced but have no words for, which enlarges our consciousness or refines our sensibility."

"The Social Function of Poetry" in On Poetry and Poets by T.S. Eliot

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