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The poet's evil influence? Perhaps, because no one ever fills the silence of those men who may read just one poem of a new poet, certainly not the fragile critic, who fears that a sequence of fifteen or twenty verses may be true.

Speech at the Nobel Banquet, Stockholm, 1959
It is up to the true poet to bear witness among us to man's double vocation. And that means holding up to his mind a mirror more sensitive to his spiritual possibilities. It means evoking in this our century a human condition more worthy of original man. It means, finally, bringing the collective soul into closer contact with the spiritual energy of the world.

Speech at the Nobel Banquet, 1960
The poet maintains for us a relationship with the permanence and unity of Being. And his lesson is one of optimism. For him the entire world of things is governed by a single law of harmony. Nothing can happen that by nature could exceed the measure of man.

Speech at the Nobel Banquet, 1960
The great adventure of the poetic mind is in no way secondary to the dramatic advances of modern science. Astronomers have been bewildered by the theory of an expanding universe, but there is no less expansion in the moral infinite of the universe of man.

Speech at the Nobel Banquet, 1960
It is enough for the poet to be the bad conscience of his age.

Speech at the Nobel Banquet, 1960
I consider myself a poet first and a musician second. I live like a poet and I'll die like a poet.
A poem is a naked person... some people say that I am a poet.
You don't necessarily have to write to be a poet. Some people work in gas stations and they're poets. I don't call myself a poet, because I don't like the word. I'm a trapeze artist.
Now begins to rise in me the familiar rhythm; words that have lain dormant now lift, now toss their crests, and fall and rise, and falls again. I am a poet, yes. Surely I am a great poet.

The Waves
The poet is individual�he is complete in himself: the others are as good as he; only he sees it, and they do not.

Leaves of Grass
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On Anger: "For every minute you remain angry, you give up sixty seconds of peace of mind."
On Destiny: "Our destiny exercises its influence over us even when, as yet, we have not learned its nature: it is our future that lays down the law of our today."
Human, All Too Human
On Friendship: "A crowd is not company; and faces are but a gallery of pictures; and talk but a tinkling cymbal, where there is no love."