John Ashbery Quotes

And though that other question that I asked and can't Remember any more is going to move still farther upward, casting Its shadow enormously over where I remain, I can't see it. Enough to know that I shall have answered for myself soon, Be led away for further questioning and later returned To the amazingly quiet room in which all my life has been spent.
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "A Wave."
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On the earth a many-colored tower of longing rises. There are many ads (to help pay for all this). Something interesting is happening on every landing.
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "On the Towpath."
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But now moments surround us Like a crowd, some inquisitive faces, some hostile ones, Some enigmatic or turned away to an anterior form of time Given once and for all. The jetstream inscribes a final flourish That melts as it stays.
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "The Lament upon the Waters."
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Always, a few errands Summon us periodically from the room of our forethought And that is a good thing.
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "A Wave."
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The sun fades like the spreading Of a peacock's tail, as though twilight Might be read as a warning to those desperate For easy solutions.
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "On the Towpath."
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But to him The love was a solid object, like a partly unpacked trunk, As it was then, which is different now when remembered.
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "The Leasing of September."
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Headhunters and jackals mingle with the viburnum And hollyhocks outside....
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "A Wave."
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To the poet as a basement quilt, but perhaps To some reader a latticework of regrets ...
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "Or In My Throat."
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So a swallow perpetuated In dove-gray dusk can be both the end and the exaltation of a new Beginning, yet forever remain itself....
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "The Leasing of September."
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But always and sometimes questioning the old modes And the new wondering, the poem, growing up through the floor, Standing tall in tubers, invading and smashing the ritual Parlor, demands to be met on its own terms now, Now that the preliminary negotiations are at last over.
John Ashbery (b. 1927), U.S. poet, critic. "A Wave."
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