Authors: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A collection of Marianne Moore quotes and sayings on life, poems, art, gardens, imagination, reading, writing, poetry, suffering etc.

93 Marianne Moore Quotes On Life, Existence & Consciousness

Quick Facts

Famous As: Poet, Writer

Born On: November 15, 1887

Died On: February 5, 1972

Born In: Kirkwood

Died At Age: 84

One of the greatest poets known in the history of American literature, Marilyn Moore was renowned for her accurate phraseology, shrewdness and irony. She was known for her compilation of poems named Collected Poems, Poetry and The Complete Poems. Moore went on to win premier accolades such as National Book Award, Pulitzer Prize, Bollingen Prize and National Medal for Literature. A meticulous Presbyterian since childhood, she was strongly influenced by the Christian faith. She expected poets to create masterpieces through words that would produce imaginary gardens with real toads in them. Moore believed that poetry is a form of mastery and morality. Anything which is phrased poorly despite being in perfect form cannot be accepted as poetry. Many believed that her work cannot be stereotyped under a class of poetry. We have collected Moore’s quotes and thoughts from her poems, writings, and general observations about life, religion, society etc. Let us browse through some of the greatest lines by this witty poet, which will be remembered till eternity.

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Your thorns are the best part of you.

Marianne Moore

... we do not admire what we cannot understand.

Marianne Moore

The deepest feeling always shows itself in silence.

Marianne Moore

The hands are the heart's messengers.

Marianne Moore

The heart that gives, gathers.

Marianne Moore

If we can't be cordial to these creatures' fleece, I think that we deserve to freeze.

Marianne Moore

There never was a war that was not inward.

Marianne Moore

I am hard to disgust, but a pretentious poet can do it

Marianne Moore

Any writer overwhelmingly honest about pleasing himself is almost sure to please others.

Marianne Moore

The self does not realize itself most fully when self-realization is its most constant aim.

Marianne Moore

Superior people never make long visits.

Marianne Moore

Truly as the sun can rot or mend, love can make one bestial or make a beast a man.

Marianne Moore

The cure for loneliness is solitude.

Marianne Moore

You are not male or female, but a plan deep-set within the heart of man.

Marianne Moore

They fought the enemy, we fight fat living and self-pity. Shine, o shine, unfalsifying sun, on this sick scene.

Marianne Moore

[Marianne Moore's definition of genuine poetry] -- Imaginary gardens with real toads in them.

Marianne Moore

Poetry ... ... a place for the genuine, Hands that can grasp, eyes that can dilate, hair that can rise

Marianne Moore

Words cluster like chromosomes, determining the procedure.

Marianne Moore

When they become so derivative as to become unintelligible, the same thing may be said for all of us, that we do not admire what we cannot understand.

Marianne Moore

...discovering Antarctica, its penguin kings and icy spires...

Marianne Moore

Yule—Yul log for the Christmas-fire tale-spinner—of fairy tales that can come true: Yul Brynner.

Marianne Moore

Omissions are not accidents.

Marianne Moore

Poetry is the art of creating imaginary gardens with real toads.

Marianne Moore

I am governed by the pull of the sentence as the pull of fabric is governed by gravity.

Marianne Moore

I, too, dislike it: there are things that are important beyond all this fiddle. Reading it, however, with a perfect contempt for it, one discovers in it after all, a place for the genuine.

Marianne Moore

When one is frank, one's very presence is a compliment.

Marianne Moore

I must fight Til I have conquered In myself what causes war

Marianne Moore

Appraisal seems chiefly useful as appraisal of the appraiser.

Marianne Moore

Hate-hardened heart, O heart of iron, iron is iron till it is rust. There never was a war that was not inward;

Marianne Moore

... imaginary gardens with real toads in them ... ... if you demand on one hand, the raw material of poetry in all its rawness and that which is on the other hand genuine, then you are interested in poetry.

Marianne Moore

... we do not admire what we cannot understand.

Marianne Moore

Dürer would have seen a reason for living in a town like this.

Marianne Moore

I wonder what Adam and Eve think of it by this time.

Marianne Moore

When one cannot appraise out of one's own experience, the temptation to blunder is minimized, but even when one can, appraisal seems chiefly useful as appraisal of the appraiser.

Marianne Moore

We don't like flowers that do not wilt; they must die, and nine she-camel hairs aid memory.

Marianne Moore

We prove, we do not explain, our birth,

Marianne Moore

A symbol from the first, of mastery, experiments such as Hippocrates made and substituted for vague speculation stayed the ravages of plague.

Marianne Moore

Poetry, that is to say the poetic, is a primal necessity.

Marianne Moore

One detects creative power by its capacity to conquer one's detachment.

Marianne Moore

If you will tell me why the fen appears impassable, I then will tell you why I think that I can cross it if I try.

Marianne Moore

The enslaver is enslaved, the hater, harmed.

Marianne Moore

We are what we were at birth, and each trait has remained in conformity with earth's and with heaven's logic: Be the devil's tool, resort to black magic, None can diverge from the ends which Heaven foreordained.

Marianne Moore

Blessed the geniuses who know / that egomania is not a duty.

Marianne Moore

Honesty - however dangerous - should be as valuable as radium it seems to me ...

Marianne Moore

Maine should be pleased that its animal is not a waverer, and rather than fight, lets the primed quill fall. Shallow oppressor, intruder, insister, you have found a resister.

Marianne Moore

You are not male nor female, but a plan deep-set within the heart of man.

Marianne Moore

He who gives quickly gives twice / in nothing so much as in a letter.

Marianne Moore

Hindered characters / seldom have mothers / in Irish stories, but they all have grandmothers.

Marianne Moore

Wolf's wool is the best of wool, / but it cannot be sheared because / the wolf will not comply.

Marianne Moore

Poetry ... ... a place for the genuine, Hands that can grasp, eyes that can dilate, hair that can rise

Marianne Moore

I, too, dislike it. Reading it, however, with a perfect contempt for it, one discovers in it, after all, a place for the genuine.

Marianne Moore

Everything I have written is the result of reading or of interest in people.

Marianne Moore

To wear the arctic fox you have to kill it.

Marianne Moore

[The] whirlwind fife-and-drum of the storm bends the salt marsh grass, disturbs stars in the sky and the star on the steeple; it is a privilege to see so much confusion.

Marianne Moore

Which of us has not been stunned by the beauty of an animal's skin or its flexibility in motion?

Marianne Moore

As contagion of sickness makes sickness, contagion of trust can make trust.

Marianne Moore

Among animals, one has a sense of humor. Humor saves a few steps, it saves years.

Marianne Moore

What is our innocence, What is our guilt? All are naked, none is safe.

Marianne Moore

As for butterflies, I can hardly conceive of one's attending upon you; but to question the congruence of the complement is vain, if it exists.

Marianne Moore

The mind is an enchanting thing is an enchanted thing, like the glaze on a katydid-wing subdivided by sun till the nettings are legion.

Marianne Moore

Only imagination that towers can reproduce evanescence and render rigidity flexible.

Marianne Moore

The mind is an enchanting thing.

Marianne Moore

The sea is a collector, quick to return a rapacious look.

Marianne Moore

Unconfusion submits its confusion to proof; it's not a Herod's oath that cannot change.

Marianne Moore

I believe verbal felicity is the fruit of ardor, of diligence, and of refusing to be false.

Marianne Moore

I'm troubled. I'm dissatisfied. I'm Irish.

Marianne Moore

When we think we don't like art it is because it is artificial art.

Marianne Moore

I see no reason for calling my work poetry except that there is no other category in which to put it.

Marianne Moore

All are / naked, none is safe.

Marianne Moore

The sweet air coming into your house on a fine day, from water etched with waves as formal as the scales on a fish.

Marianne Moore

There never was a war that was not inward; I must fight till I have conquered in myself what causes war.

Marianne Moore

War is pillage versus resistance and if illusions of magnitude could be transmuted into ideals of magnanimity, peace might be realized.

Marianne Moore

You're not free until you've been made captive by supreme belief.

Marianne Moore

The Irish say your trouble is their trouble and your joy their joy? I wish I could believe it; I am troubled, I'm dissatisfied, I'm Irish.

Marianne Moore

The power of the visible is the invisible.

Marianne Moore

One must be as clear as one's natural reticence allows one to be.

Marianne Moore

Conscious writing can be the death of poetry.

Marianne Moore

The cynics in life are the people who are always trying to do things for people who don't want things done for them.

Marianne Moore

Excess is the common substitute for energy.

Marianne Moore

When you take my time, you take something I had meant to use ...

Marianne Moore

The weak overcomes its/ menace, the strong over-/comes itself.

Marianne Moore

In a poem the excitement has to maintain itself. I am governed by the pull of the sentence as the pull of a fabric is governed by gravity.

Marianne Moore

At all events there is in Brooklyn something that makes me feel at home.

Marianne Moore

One writes because one has a burning desire to objectify what it is indispensable to one's happiness to express ...

Marianne Moore

A writer is unfair to himself when he is unable to be hard on himself.

Marianne Moore

Egotism is usually subversive of sagacity.

Marianne Moore

I never 'plan' a stanza. Words cluster like chromosomes, determining the procedure.

Marianne Moore

The passion for setting people right is in itself an afflictive disease.

Marianne Moore

Life is energy, and energy is creativity. And even when individuals pass on, the energy is retained in the work of art, locked in it and awaiting release if only someone will take the time and the care to unlock it.

Marianne Moore

We Call Them the Brave who likely were reluctant to be brave.

Marianne Moore

Beauty is everlasting And dust is for a time.

Marianne Moore

Originality is... a by-product of sincerity.

Marianne Moore

It is in general true that in order to create works of art one has to have leisure. On the other hand I think that one needs to experience resistance in a practical sense, and even that which is poignant to bring out what makes easy reading for others. Too much deprivation of course, means death.

Marianne Moore