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Writing Trivia - What Ezra Pound thought…
'When you start searching for ‘pure elements’ in literature you will find that literature has been created by the following classes of persons:
Inventors. Men who found a new process, or whose extant work gives us the first known example of a process.
The masters. Men who combined a number of such processes, and who used them as well as or better than the inventors.
The diluters. Men who came after the first two kinds of writer, and couldn’t do the job quite as well.
Good writers without salient qualities. Men who are fortunate enough to be born when the literature of a given country is in good working order, or when some particular branch of writing is ‘healthy’. For example, men who wrote sonnets in Dante’s time, men who wrote short lyrics in Shakespeare’s time or for several decades thereafter, or who wrote French novels and stories after Flaubert had shown them how.
Writers of belles-lettres. That is, men who didn’t really invent anything, but who specialized in some particular part of writing, who couldn’t be considered as ‘great men’ or as authors who were trying to give a complete presentation of life, or of their epoch.
Happy Birthday, Ezra Pound, born 30 October 1885, died 1 November 1972
Five Ezra Pound Quotes
Good writers are those who keep the language efficient. That is to say, keep it accurate, keep it clear.
If a nation’s literature declines, the nation atrophies and decays.
Properly, we should read for power. Man reading should be man intensely alive. The book should be a ball of light in one’s hand.
In our time, the curse is monetary illiteracy, just as inability to read plain print was the curse of earlier centuries.
Poetry is a sort of inspired mathematics, which gives us equations, not for abstract figures, triangles, squares, and the like, but for the human emotions. If one has a mind which inclines to magic rather than science, one will prefer to speak of these equations as spells or incantations; it sounds more arcane, mysterious, recondite.
Ezra Pound was one of modern poetry’s most important contributors. T. S. Eliot declared that Pound “is more responsible for the twentieth-century revolution in poetry than is any other individual.” Pound stressed clarity, precision and economy of language. He worked in London in the early 20th century as foreign editor of several American literary magazines. Pound supported the work of T. S. Eliot, James Joyce, Robert Frost and Ernest Hemingway. He was responsible for the publication of Eliot’s The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock and for the serialization of Joyce’s Ulysses.