Zbigniew Herbert on the Work of Poets

“In Poland,” Herbert once stated, “we think of the poet as prophet;
he is not merely a maker of verbal forms or an imitator of reality. The poet expresses the deepest feelings and the widest awareness of people….

“The language of poetry differs from the language of politics. And, after all, poetry lives longer than any conceivable political crisis.

“The poet looks over a broad terrain and over vast stretches of time. He makes observations on the problems of his own time, to be sure, but he is a partisan only in the sense that he is a partisan of the truth. He arouses doubts and uncertainties and brings everything into question

Quoted on the From the Editors page at the UCity Review.

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