He was a bad acquaintance for a placid, sedentary soul like me, for though he could work like a Trojan when the fit took him, he was never at the same job very long. In the same week he would harass an Under-Secretary about horses for the Army, write voluminously to the press about a gun he had invented for potting aeroplanes, give a fancy-dress ball which he forgot to attend, and get into the semi-final of the racquets championship. I waited daily to see him start a new religion.
Many young poets, nowadays, are insured against everything. For them poetry is a game like court tennis or squash racquets one they learned at college and they play it with propriety, as part of their social and academic existence; their poems are occasional verse for which life itself is only one more occasion.Randall Jarrell
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