Choice, with its inevitable invitations to loss, is always such a trial. It does not matter, in my experience, that a particular choice consists in apparently unweighty alternatives. Quite the opposite. Choices between banalities are some of our more intimidating ordeals in life.

– Donald Antrim, The Verificationist

You always know the truth, because when you cut yourself or someone else with it, there’s always a bloody show.

– Stephen King, “The Body”

selected notes from two weeks ago’s Mary Ruefle Q&A

  • "I’ve never been interested in writing a ‘good’ poem."
  • "Six Arguments w/ Kafka" — story about whether it was prose or a poem, 1st accepted piece…
  • People would rather read about things than experience things themselves.
  • Recently I was doing something that we all do at various times — bemoaning life choices
  • stop thinking of yourself as a writer and start thinking of yourself as an artist
  • James Lord book on Giacometti
  • you wouldn’t be doing this if you didn’t like the way you feel while doing it
  • we live in a world that tells us what to pay attention to, but we have a choice about what we want to pay attention to
  • 1/2 of my poems were untouched after first draft; 1/2 were drastically revised, maybe over years, maybe so radical that only 1 or 2 original lines remained
  • we all want to grow up and become someone else, but we grow up and become who we are
  • endurance, patience, and persistence

(all quotes jotted down and thus possibly “wrong”)