"The first function of poetry is to tell the truth, to learn how to do that, to find out what you really feel and what you really think."
"All bad poetry springs from genuine feeling."June Jordan on Oscar Wilde
"A poet can survive everything but a misprint."June Jordan on Oscar Wilde
"Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion it is not the expression of personality, but an escape from personality. But, of course, only those who have personality and emotions know what it means to want to escape from these things."June Jordan on T. S. Eliot
"Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words."June Jordan on Robert Frost
"A poem begins as a lump in the throat, a sense of wrong, a homesickness, a lovesickness."June Jordan on Robert Frost
"That attitude that fighting is probably not fair, but you have to defend yourself anyway and damage the enemy, has been profoundly consequential as far as my political activism goes."
"There are two ways to worry words. One is hoping for the greatest possible beauty in what is created. The other is to tell the truth."
"The courts cannot garnish a father's salary, nor freeze his account, nor seize his property on behalf of his children, in our society. Apparently this is because a kid is not a car or a couch or a boat."
"But, based on my friendship with Evie as young mothers, I started going on freedom rides in 1966."
"Poetry is a political act because it involves telling the truth."
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