Monday, March 5, 2012

Monday Morning Quote: Maxine Kumin on Writing about Family

... I do edit and self-censor my work to keep from crossing certain boundaries of privacy and decorum. I am fond of saying to fearful students who turn in poems about family members, "Now that you have made art of it, it belongs to the ages." But of course there are matters of taste and tact. Sometimes just putting a searing poem away for a few days, months, or years will solve the problem. Sometimes, as you "await the birth-hour of a new clarity," as Rilke advised Mr. Kappus, a path around the emotional obstacle will appear. And eventually, truly, it will belong to the ages.

—Maxine Kiumin, Always Beginning