From “The Study of Poetry” - 1920 by Bliss Perry
"Art is the expression of impressions." - Benedetto Croce
"Art is nature seen through a temperament"
- Emile Zola
"Art is nature made human"
- G.L. Raymond
"Eloquence is heard; poetry is overheard.”
- J.S. Mill
"Poetry is not like reasoning, a power to be exerted according to the determination of the will. A man cannot say, 'I will compose poetry.'. . . It is not subject to the control of the active powers of the mind. … Its birth and recurrence have no necessary connection with the consciousness or will."
- Percy Bysshe Shelley
"I wish our clever young poets would remember my homely definitions of prose and poetry; that is, prose = words in their best order;—poetry = the best words in the best order."
The "literary" user of language in modern times comes to depend upon the written or printed page; he tends to become more or less "eye-minded"; whereas the typical orator remains "ear-minded"—i.e. peculiarly sensitive to a series of sounds, and composing for the ear of listeners rather than for the eye of readers. Now as compared with the typical novelist, the poet is surely, like the orator, "ear-minded."
- Bliss Perry
"Musically speaking—because the musical terms are exact and not ambiguous—true dactyls are in 2-4 time and the verse of Evangeline is in 3-8 time."
- T. D. Goodell
"But he published a criticism of one of my poems which proved that he did not understand the poem at all. He had studied it too hard! The words of a poem are stepping-stones across a brook. If you linger on one of them too long, you will get your feet wet! You must cross, vite!"
- Auguste Angellier