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Born in November 19, 1899 / Died in February 9, 1979 / United States / English

Quotes by Allen Tate

I am not ridiculing verbal mechanisms, dreams, or repressions as origins of poetry; all three of them and more besides may have a great deal to do with it.
What is the poem, after it is written? That is the question. Not where it came from or why.
At twelve I was determined to shoot only For honor; at twenty not to shoot at all; I know at thirty-three that one must shoot As often as one gets the rare chance - In killing there is more than commentary.
According to its doctors, my one intransigent desire is to have been a Confederate general, and because I could not or would not become anything else, I set up for poet and beg an to invent fictions about the personal ambitions that my society has no use for.
The only real evidence that any critic may bring before his gaze is the finished poem.
Men expect too much, do too little.
Other psychological theories say a good deal about compensation.
Poets, in their way, are practical men; they are interested in results.
For some reason most critics have a hard time fixing their minds directly under their noses, and before they see the object that is there they use a telescope upon the horizon to see where it came from.
How does one happen to write a poem: where does it come from? That is the question asked by the psychologists or the geneticists of poetry.
The innocent mansion of a panther's heart!
Experience means conflict, our natures being what they are, and conflict means drama.
Dramatic experience is not logical; it may be subdued to the kind of coherence that we indicate when we speak, in criticism, of form.
Serious poetry deals with the fundamental conflicts that cannot be logically resolved: we can state the conflicts rationally, but reason does not relieve us of them.
But in our age the appeal to authority is weak, and I am of my age.
We know the particular poem, not what it says that we can restate.
Narcissism and the Confederate dead cannot be connected logically, or even historically; even were the connection an historical fact, they would not stand connected as art, for no one experiences raw history.
So the poet, who wants to be something that he cannot be, and is a failure in plain life, makes up fictitious versions of his predicament that are interesting even to other persons because nobody is a perfect automobile salesman.
Religion is the sole technique for the validating of values.
In a manner of speaking, the poem is its own knower, neither poet nor reader knowing anything that the poem says apart from the words of the poem.
Genetic theories, I gather, have been cherished academically with detachment.
The Spring I seek is in a new face only.
I believe the term modulation denotes in music the uninterrupted shift from one key to another: I do not know the term for change of rhythm without change of measure.
One rumor straight comes huddling on another Of death, and death, and death!
The dull conclave of crows'-footed faces Twitches as the man with one dollar enters;...