Robert Graves

Submitted by admin on Wed, 09/21/2016 - 11:44

photo of Robert GravesQuotes

  • To be a poet is a condition rather than a profession.
  • There's no money in poetry, but there's no poetry in money, either.
  • One gets to the heart of the matter by a series of experiences in the same pattern, but in different colors.
  • If I were a girl, I'd despair. The supply of good women far exceeds that of the men who deserve them.
  • A well chosen anthology is a complete dispensary of medicine for the more common mental disorders, and may be used as much for prevention as cure
  • What we now call 'finance' is, I hold, an intellectual perversion of what began as warm human love.
  • Marriage, like money, is still with us; and, like money, progressively devalued.
  • In love as in sport, the amateur status must be strictly maintained.
  • Never use the word 'audience.' The very idea of a public, unless the poet is writing for money, seems wrong to me. Poets don't have an 'audience'. They're talking to a single person all the time.
  • Anthropologists are a connecting link between poets and scientists; though their field-work among primitive peoples has often made them forget the language of science.

The difference between you and her
(whom I to you did once prefer)
Is clear enough to settle:
She like a diamond shone, but you
Shine like an early drop of dew
Poised on a red rose petal.

The dew-drop carries in its eye
Mountain and forest, sea and sky,
With every change of weather;
Contrariwise, a diamond splits
The prospect into idle bits
That none can piece together.



Robert Graves was born in Wimbledon, Surrey on 24 July 1895, and he died in Majorca on 7 December 1985. He was an English poet, novelist, critic and classicist. During his long life he produced more than 140 works, most of whichhave never been out of print. This include his poems (including many war poems from WWI), his translations and innovative analysis and interpretations of the Greek myth, his memoir of his early life, including his role in the First World War, “Good-Bye to All That” and his speculative study of poetic inspiration, The White Goddess (which, obviously enough is mostly about the traces left by the Goddess religions, although it is not an easy read).

He earned his living from writing, particularly popular historical novels such as I, Claudius, King Jesus, The Golden Fleece and Count Belisarius. He also was a prominent translator of Classical Latin and Ancient Greek texts; his versions of The Twelve Caesars and The Golden Ass remain popular for their clarity and entertaining style, and several have been televised.