“69 Hidebound Opinions”

These quotes come from C.D. Wright’s essay “69 Hidebound Opinions, Propositions, and Several Asides from a Manila Folder Concerning the Stuff of Poetry,” which you can (and should!) read in the anthology By Herself: Women Reclaim Poetry.

“Asked informally “What’s a young poet to do,” Robert Creeley proposed, “form a company.” He meant start something: a magazine, a book press, go on-line; publish yourselves. One outfit flies by night, start another by day. Form a company in the repertory theater’s sense of the word ensemble–let all do their parts.”


“Poetry and advertising (the basest mode of which is propaganda) are in direct and total opposition. If you do not use language you are used by it.”

One more:

“Lately silence, as the formal element I have been missing, has shattered the noise. If the incision of our words amounts to nothing but a feeling, a slow motion, it will still cut a better swath than the factory model. It is poetry that remarks on the barely perceptible disappearances from our world such as that of the sleeping porch or the root cellar. And poetry that notes the barely perceptible appearances.”

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