Sunday, January 4, 2009


"When my mother was very young, she took a trip to Greece. There, she saw a performance of Medea in amphitheater in southern Peloponnesus. The experience moved her profoundly because as Medea is about to kill her children, a number of people in the audience started yelling, 'No, don't do it, Medea!' 'These people had no sense of seeing a work of art,' she told me many times. 'It was all real.'"
- David Rieff, from the introduction to Reborn, Susan Sontag's journals from 1947 - 1963


Eric Z. said...

Reminds me of the interview with Jack Gilbert in the current issue of The American Poetry Review:

"My heart, for instance, was partially made by Frank Sinatra and the movies I went to when I was growing up. My heart was shaped by stories, by pictures, by songs. I believe we are made by art, art that matters. Not what's ingenious, clever, or hard to read. Not a mystery puzzle. I think if a poem doesn't put emotional pressure on me, I don't feel comfortable in the sense of feeling more than I can feel, understanding more than I can understand, loving more than I am able to be in love. Real poetry enables me for that. I think it's about putting pressure on me. If it doesn't put pressure on the reader, what's it for?"

Leigh Stein said...

that's wonderful