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"...since it is a poet who is making the observation, he puts in terms of silence and speech, giving sound, the poet's element, a certain preeminence over sight, the painter's sense."

So much information on so few pages in Brann's essay Pictures in Poetry" Keats's "Ode on a Grecian Urn"

Poetry is like a picture. In Keats's poem, his poem is about a picture on an urn.
The use of descriptive words, their magical capacity for evoking visual images, might well be applied to visions which are themselves artful.
Keats produces an image in his poem. This is an image of an image, though.
The urn is depicted with silently articulating scenes and sharp vividness.
These pictures induce visions of a world behind them. The urn itself has its own voice and responds the the poet's questioning.
The vision and objects held by one's imagination are actual and has a visual character.
Poetry is visualizable. The language in the poetry and visual images received from the language depict something that is based on one's imagination.

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Lorin said:

I like how you focus on the visualization of poetry. This quote was interesting to me because I agree that by using words to talk about the visual, a poet is making a statement about sound over sight. Even about any of the other sense above sight. I think this is significant because sight is the sense we usually rely on first and most heavily. I think we lose sight we become extremely frustrated by how we are inhibited, much more frustration than if we cannot touch something or smell something or even feel something. Focusing on what we learn from senses other than sight is hard to do, but it is something a good writer is able to do if they want to create real, vivid images. And by using a poem (aka sound) to describe these images, a poet is doing something very difficult and arguably more difficult than the visual representations of life an artist can create. But, of course, the artists also do the things with great difficulty. But, poets are probably just being slightly vain and trying to validate their own talents.

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This page contains a single entry by Denamarie published on February 26, 2007 1:32 PM.

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