Robinson Jeffers

(10 January 1887 – 20 January 1962 / Allegheny, Pennsylvania)

Quotations

  • ''If civilization goes down, that
    Would be an event to contemplate.
    It will not be in our time, alas, my dear,
    It will not be in our time.''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. May—June, 1940 (l. 22-25). . . Modern American Poetry. Louis Untermeyer, ed. (8th rev. ed., 1962) Harcourt, Brace and Company.
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  • ''It would be better for men
    To be few and live far apart, where none could infect another; then
    slowly the sanity of field and mountain
    And the cold ocean and glittering stars might enter their minds.''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. May—June, 1940 (l. 5-7). . . Modern American Poetry. Louis Untermeyer, ed. (8th rev. ed., 1962) Harcourt, Brace and Company.
  • ''the dive-bomber's screaming orgasm
    As beautiful as other passions;''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. May—June, 1940 (l. 12-13). . . Modern American Poetry. Louis Untermeyer, ed. (8th rev. ed., 1962) Harcourt, Brace and Company.
  • ''And why do you cry, my dear, why do you cry?
    It is all in the whirling circles of time.
    If millions are born millions must die,''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. May—June, 1940 (l. 16-18). . . Modern American Poetry. Louis Untermeyer, ed. (8th rev. ed., 1962) Harcourt, Brace and Company.
  • ''They dance with reluctance, they are growing civilized; the old men
    persuade them.''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. New Mexican Mountain (l. 4). . . Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry, The. Richard Ellmann and Robert O'Clair, eds. (2d ed., 1988) W. W. Norton & Company.
  • ''Only the drum is confident, it thinks the world has not changed;''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. New Mexican Mountain (l. 5). . . Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry, The. Richard Ellmann and Robert O'Clair, eds. (2d ed., 1988) W. W. Norton & Company.
  • ''civilization is a transient sickness.''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. New Mexican Mountain (l. 12). . . Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry, The. Richard Ellmann and Robert O'Clair, eds. (2d ed., 1988) W. W. Norton & Company.
  • ''Life is grown sweeter and lonelier,
    And death is no evil.''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. Night (l. 64-65). . . Oxford Book of American Verse, The. F. O. Matthiessen, ed. (1950) Oxford University Press.
  • ''And life, the flicker of men and moths and the wolf on the hill,
    Though furious for continuance, passionately feeding, passionately
    Remaking itself upon its mates, remembers deep inward
    The calm mother, the quietness of the womb and the egg,''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. Night (l. 51-54). . . Oxford Book of American Verse, The. F. O. Matthiessen, ed. (1950) Oxford University Press.
  • ''O passionately at peace when will that tide draw shoreward,''
    Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), U.S. poet. Night (l. 47). . . Oxford Book of American Verse, The. F. O. Matthiessen, ed. (1950) Oxford University Press.

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The Eye

The Atlantic is a stormy moat; and the Mediterranean,
The blue pool in the old garden,
More than five thousand years has drunk sacrifice
Of ships and blood, and shines in the sun; but here the Pacific--
Our ships, planes, wars are perfectly irrelevant.
Neither our present blood-feud with the brave dwarfs
Nor any future world-quarrel of westering
And eastering man, the bloody migrations, greed of power, clash of
faiths--

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