Robert Lowell Quotes

Enjoy the top 68 famous quotes, sayings and quotations by Robert Lowell.

Robert Lowell Quotes

History has to live with what was here,
clutching and close to fumbling all we had -
it is so dull and gruesome how we die,
unlike writing, life never finishes.
— Robert Lowell —

If youth is a defect, it is one that we outgrow too soon.

— Robert Lowell

The dead season when wolves live off the wind.

— Robert Lowell

Reading Myself
Like thousands I took just pride and more than just,
struck matches that brought my blood to a boil;
I memorized the tricks to set the river on fire
somehow never wrote something to go back to.
Can I suppose I am finished with wax flowers
and have earned my grass on the minor slopes of Parnassus ...
No honeycomb is built without a bee
adding circle to circle, cell to cell,
the wax and honey of a mausoleum
this round dome proves its maker is alive;
the corpse of the insect lives embalmed in honey,
prays that its perishable work live long
enough for the sweet tooth bear to desecrate
this open book..my open coffin

— Robert Lowell

Eating Out Alone"
The loneliness inside me is a place,
Harvard where no one might always be someone.
When we're alone people we run from change
to the mysterious and beautiful
I am eating alone at a small white table,
visible, ignored ... the moment that tries the soul,
an explorer going blind in polar whiteness.
Yet everyone who is seated is a lay,,
or Paul Claudel, at the next table declaiming:
"L'Academie Groton, eh, c'est une ecole des cochons."
He soars from murdered English to killing French,
no word unheard, no sentence understood
a vocabulary to mortify Racine ...
the minotaur steaming in a maze of eloquence

— Robert Lowell

One universe, one body ... in this urn
the animal night sweats of the spirit burn

— Robert Lowell

Dearest I cannot loiter here
in lather like a polar bear.

— Robert Lowell

Monkeys"
"You can buy cooler, more humdrum pets
a monkey deprived of his mother in the cradle
feels the want of her affection so keenly
he either pines away or masters you
by literally hanging on your neck
no ounce of your patience or courage is misplaced;
the worst is his air of boredom and neglect,
manifested in tail-chewing and fur plucking.
The whole species is vulnerable to killing colds,
likes straw, hay or bits of a torn blanket,
a floortray thinly covered with sawdust,
they need trapezes, shelves, old rubber tires
any string or beam will do to set them swinging
these charming youngsters tend to sour with age

— Robert Lowell

What we love we are.

— Robert Lowell

Sometimes nothing is so solid to me as writing - I suppose that's what a vocation means - at times a torment, a bad conscience, but all in all, purpose and direction.

— Robert Lowell

Poetry is not the record of an event: it is an event.

— Robert Lowell

Their monument sticks like a fishbone in the city's throat.

— Robert Lowell

September twenty-second, Sir, the bough cracks with unpicked apples, and at dawn the small-mouth bass breaks water, gorged with spawn.

— Robert Lowell

It's the light of the oncoming train.

— Robert Lowell

The scythers, Time and Death,
Helmed locusts, move upon the tree of breath

— Robert Lowell

Wallowing in this bloody sty,
I cast for fish that pleased my eye

— Robert Lowell

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