[Four Dancers; Edgar Degas, 1899]

Poetry is a Kind of Lying
-- Jack Gilbert
Poetry is a kind of lying,
necessarily. To profit the poet
or beauty. But also in
that truth may be told only so. 
Those who, admirably, refuse
to falsify (as those who will not
risk pretensions) are excluded
from saying even so much. 
Degas said he didn't paint
what he saw, but what
would enable them to see
the thing he had.

1 comment:

Loren said...

I like this very much; better than the four poems I cited when I read his collected poems.

It reminds me of an Emily Dickinson poem "There's a certain slant of light."