Thursday, October 8, 2009

What does it mean to be a poet?

Henrik Ibsen lived in the 1800's and died in 1906. He was considered by some to be the Father of Modern Literature. Although I do not agree with all his philosophies or find all his plays entertaining, I do relate to a quote from a speech he gave in 1874 to a group of Norwegian students. It is as follows:
"...And what does it mean, then to be a poet? It was a long time before I realized that to be a poet means essentially to see, but mark well, to see in such a way that whatever is seen is perceived by the audience just as the poet saw it. But only what has been lived through can be seen in that way. And the secret of modern literature lies percisely in this matter of experience that are lived through. All that I have written these past ten years, I have lived through spiritually.

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