Aspects of Modern Poetry

Aspects of Modern Poetry

Aspects of Modern Poetry

Aspects of Modern Poetry

Excerpt

"WE do not," said Warton in his Essay on Pope , "sufficiently attend to the difference there is between a man of wit, a man of sense, and a true poet. . . . Which of these characters is the most valuable and useful, is entirely out of the question: all I plead for, is, to have their several provinces kept distinct from each other; and to impress on the reader that a clear head, and acute understanding, are not sufficient, alone, to make a poet; that the most solid observations on human life, expressed with the utmost elegance and brevity, are morality, and not poetry."

It is from an exuberance of this morality, perverted or unperverted, that much of the newest poetry suffers in this age, and it is a morality which is rarely expressed with elegance and brevity, and seldom arises from a clear head and acute understanding.

The decay of taste in this age is due, in part, to the fact that the public mind is still overshadowed by those Aberdeen granite tombs and monuments, the classical scholars of Victorian times. The public had a restless feeling that it disliked being bored. But it had not yet assimilated the fact that there . . .

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