Explore the most impactful and insightful quotes and sayings by Louis Macneice, and enrich your perspective with the wisdom. Share these inspiring Louis Macneice quotes pictures with your friends on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, or your personal blogs, completely free. Here are the top 73 Louis Macneice quotes for you to read and share.

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I would have a poet able bodied, fond of talking, a reader of the newspapers, capable of pity and laughter, informed in economics, appreciative of women, involved in personal relationships, actively interested in politics, susceptible to physical impressions. -- Louis Macneice
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Style without content is bad style. -- Louis Macneice
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Some day I shall write a novel and call it 'A Walking Tour in the Congo' or 'Thrills and Spills in Aeronautics'; but I keep this type of title as a last & mercenary resort. -- Louis Macneice
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Before I joined the BBC I was, like most of the intelligentsia, prejudiced not only against that institution but against broadcasting in general. -- Louis Macneice
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I cannot drug my life with the present moment;
The present moment may rape
but all in vain
The future, for the future remains a virgin
Who must be tried again. -- Louis Macneice
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We are all fed from hundreds and thousands of hands. Often we do not know whose they are nor how they work. Only a few of us ever visualize the hands that grope in the coal mines or push levers in the mills or handle axes in the lumber camp. -- Louis Macneice
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The rules or 'laws' of poetry are only tentative devices, an approximate scheme. There is no Sinaitic recipe for poetry, for the individual poem is the norm. -- Louis Macneice
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When I went to bed as a child, I was told, 'You don't know where you'll wake up.' When I ran in the garden, I was told that running was bad for the heart. Everything had its sinister aspect - milk shrinks the stomach, lemon thins the blood. -- Louis Macneice
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Nationalism of the Irish type is often regarded as reactionary. With the World Revolution and the Classless Society waiting for the midwife, why take a torch to the stable to assist at the birth of a puppy? Even if the puppy is pedigree. On this question I am unable to make up my mind. -- Louis Macneice
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A pharaoh's profile, a Krishna's grace, tail like a question mark. -- Louis Macneice
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All the arts, to varying degrees, involve some kind of a compromise. This being so, how far need the radio dramatist go to meet the public without losing sight of himself and his own standards of value? -- Louis Macneice
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I was the rector's son, born to the anglican order,
Banned for ever from the candles of the Irish poor;
The Chichesters knelt in marble at the end of a transept
With ruffs about their necks, their portion sure. -- Louis Macneice
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The poet is a specialist in something which everyone practises. Herein, poetry differs from the other arts. Everyone does not practise music or painting or even dancing, but everyone without exception puts together words poetically every day of his life. -- Louis Macneice
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Wyndham Lewis is basically a pessimist, thinking of human beings as doomed animals or determinist machines. His theory of satire is based on this view, and he finds plenty of evidence to support it in contemporary practice. -- Louis Macneice
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The argument was wilful,
The alternatives untrue,
We need no metaphysics
To sanction what we do
Or to muffle us in comfort
From what we did not do. -- Louis Macneice
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Dublin was hardly worried by the war; her old preoccupations were still preoccupations. The intelligentsia continued their parties; their mutual malice was as effervescent as ever. -- Louis Macneice
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Let us thank God for valour in abstraction
For those who go their own way, will not kiss
The arse of law and order nor compound
For physical comfort at the price of pride -- Louis Macneice
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Politics: distrust all parties but consider capitalism must go. -- Louis Macneice
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A fortress against ideas and against the
Shuddering insidious shock of the theory-vendors
The little sardine men crammed in a monster toy
Who tilt their aggregate beast against our crumbling Troy. -- Louis Macneice
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All experiment is made on a basis of tradition; all tradition is the crystallization of experiment. -- Louis Macneice
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I am not yet born; Forgive me For the sins that in me the world shall commit, my words When they speak me, my thoughts when they think me, My treason engendered by traitors beyound me, My life when they murder by means of my hands, my death when they live me. -- Louis Macneice
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World is suddener than we fancy it. -- Louis Macneice
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All that I would like to be is human, having a share
in a civilized, articulate and well-adjusted
community where the mind is given its due
but the body is not distrusted -- Louis Macneice
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And at this hour of the day it is no good saying
'Take away this cup';
Having helped to fill it ourselves it is only logic
That now we should drink it up. -- Louis Macneice
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My birth was managed so rottenly that my mother had eventually to have a hysterectomy, after which she was ill off & on till she dies for obscure reasons when I was just 7. -- Louis Macneice
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My sympathies are Left. On paper and in the soul. But not in my heart or my guts. -- Louis Macneice
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Let them not make me a stone and let them not spill me, otherwise kill me. -- Louis Macneice
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A poet should always be 'collaborating' with his public, but this public, in the mass, cannot make itself heard, and he has to guess at its requirements and its criticisms. -- Louis Macneice
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Man is an unhappy animal and one that can talk. If he was not unhappy, he would have nothing to talk about. But if he had nothing to talk about, he would be unhappy. -- Louis Macneice
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I would admit that poetry is something more than mere communication and that if that 'something more' could be abstracted from the whole, it might well prove to be that which makes the whole a poem. -- Louis Macneice
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You know the worst: your wills are fickle,
Your values blurred, your hearts impure
And your past life a ruined church
But let your poison be your cure. -- Louis Macneice
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World is crazier and more of it than we think,
Incorrigibly plural. I peel and portion
A tangerine and spit the pips and feel
The drunkenness of things being various. -- Louis Macneice
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The poet is primarily a spokesman, making statements or incantations on behalf of himself or others - usually for both, for it is difficult to speak for oneself without speaking for others or to speak for others without speaking for oneself. -- Louis Macneice
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Time was away and somewhere else,
There were two glasses and two chairs
And two people with one pulse. -- Louis Macneice
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Blind wantons like the gulls who scream
And rip the edge off any ideal or dream. -- Louis Macneice
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There seeps from heavily jowled or hawk-like foreign faces
The guttural sorrow of the refugees. -- Louis Macneice
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The sunlight on the garden
Hardens and grows cold,
We cannot cage the minute
Within its nets of gold -- Louis Macneice
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And I envy the intransigence of my own
Countrymen who shoot to kill and never
See the victim's face become their own
Or find his motive sabotage their motives. -- Louis Macneice
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I do not envy any animal, though I envy many of their capacities. -- Louis Macneice
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Thus were we weaned to knowledge of the Will
That wills the natural world, but wills us dead. -- Louis Macneice
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Nearly all children have a feeling for rhythm in words, for the delicate pattern of nursery rhymes. Many adults have lost this feeling and, if they read verse at all, demand a far cruder music than that which they once appreciated. -- Louis Macneice
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Rows of books around me stand,
Fence me in on either hand;
Through that forest of dead words
I would hunt the living birds
So I write these lines for you
Who have felt the death-wish too,
All the wires are cut, my friends
Live beyond the severed ends. -- Louis Macneice
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Self-assertion more often than not is vulgar, but a live and vulgar dog who keeps on barking is better than a dead lion, however dignified. -- Louis Macneice
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All the people I know have been conditioned by snobbery. -- Louis Macneice
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You can't express emotion without giving information. -- Louis Macneice
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The teapot takes in water and gives out tea. So the human individual takes in anything you give him and promptly transforms it; he is ready to give you out again his own reactions - first, in thought and emotion, then in voice or action. -- Louis Macneice
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It's no go the merry-go-round, it's no go the rickshaw
All we want is a limousine and a ticket for the peepshow. -- Louis Macneice
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None of our hearts are pure, we always have mixed motives.
Are self deceivers, but the worst of all
Deceits is to murmur 'Lord, I am not worthy'
And, lying easy, turn your face to the wall. -- Louis Macneice
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I have just finished my novel (rough draft). It is to be called 'Anacoluthon.' This will make the public think it is an historical romance. -- Louis Macneice
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Democracy - or any improvement on it - will rest on the layman's right to criticize. His criticism will be often - very often - damn silly, but if, like Plato and the Fascists, we take away his right to criticize, we take away his right to appreciate. -- Louis Macneice
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Up the Rebels, To Hell with the Pope,
And God Save
as you prefer
the King or Ireland.
The land of scholars and saints:
Scholars and saints my eye, the land of ambush,
Purblind manifestoes, never-ending complaints -- Louis Macneice
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Everyone is not able, or inclined, to write poetry in the narrower sense any more than everyone is qualified to take part in a walking race. But just as all of us can and do walk, so all of us can and do use language poetically. -- Louis Macneice
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In January 1921, I found myself wonderfully alone in an empty carriage in a rocking train in the night between Waterloo and Sherborne. Stars on each side of me; I ran from side to side of the carriage, checking the constellations. -- Louis Macneice
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The poet has no greater number of muscles than the ordinary conversationalist; he merely has more highly developed muscles and better coordination. And he practises his activity according to a stricter set of rules. -- Louis Macneice
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I am not yet born; O fill me with strength against those who would freeze my humanity. -- Louis Macneice
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Broadcasting is plastic; while it can ape the press, it can also emulate the arts. -- Louis Macneice
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I am 33 years old, and what can I have been doing that I still am in a muddle? But everyone else is, too; maybe our muddles are concurrent. -- Louis Macneice
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Or because they hope these walls of books will deaden the drumming of the demon in their ears -- Louis Macneice
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A harrassed and dubious childhood under the hand of a well-meaning but barbarous mother's help from County Armagh led me to think of the North of Ireland as prison and the South as a land of escape. -- Louis Macneice
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It's no go the picture palace, it's no go the stadium,
It's no go the country cot with a pot of pink geraniums.
It's no go the Government grants, it's no go the elections,
Sit on your arse for fifty years and hang your hat on a pension. -- Louis Macneice
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Mysticism, in the narrow sense, implies a specific experience which is foreign to most poets and most men, but on the other hand, it represents an instinct which is a human sine qua non. -- Louis Macneice
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The individualist is an atom thinking about himself (Thank God I am not as other men); the communist, too often, is an atom having ecstasies of self-denial (Thank God I am one in a crowd). -- Louis Macneice
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Good poets have written in order to describe something or to preach something - with their eye on the object or the end. The essence of the poetry does not lie in the thing described or in the message imparted but in the resulting concrete unity, the poem. -- Louis Macneice
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I am not yet born; O hear me.
Let not the bloodsucking bat or the rat or the stoat or the
club-footed ghoul come near me. -- Louis Macneice
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As things may turn out in the future, people may (though I doubt it) find that their work gives them all the enjoyment - physical, intellectual or aesthetic - which they may require. That certainly is not so now. -- Louis Macneice
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Down the road someone is practicing scales,
The notes like little fishes vanish with a wink of tails -- Louis Macneice
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Fort of the Dane,
Garrison of the Saxon,
Augustan capital
Of a Gaelic nation,
Appropriating all
The alien brought,
You give me time for thought. -- Louis Macneice
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It is a retrogression when human beings begin to insist on uniform, on one-mindedness, on conditioning their offspring so that all their reactions are automatic. -- Louis Macneice
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I am more proud of what distinguishes man from the animals than of what he has in common with them. -- Louis Macneice
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I am at home in Dublin, more than in any other city. -- Louis Macneice
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In writing 'A Portrait of Athens' I have attempted - rather impressionistically - to give a panorama of its present. But I have also brought in its past because I sincerely think that there is a continuity. -- Louis Macneice
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The poet is a maker, not a retail trader. -- Louis Macneice
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Better authentic mammon than a bogus god. -- Louis Macneice