"Before people complain of the obscurity of modern poetry, they should first examine their consciences and ask themselves with how many people and on how many occasions they have genuinely and profoundly shared some experience with another."
"All bad poetry springs from genuine feeling."W. H. Auden on Oscar Wilde
"A poet can survive everything but a misprint."W. H. Auden 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."W. H. Auden on T. S. Eliot
"Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words."W. H. Auden on Robert Frost
"A poem begins as a lump in the throat, a sense of wrong, a homesickness, a lovesickness."W. H. Auden on Robert Frost
"Now is the age of anxiety."
"The class distinctions proper to a democratic society are not those of rank or money, still less, as is apt to happen when these are abandoned, of race, but of age."
"'Healing,' Papa would tell me, 'is not a science, but the intuitive art of wooing nature.'"
"It is a sad fact about our culture that a poet can earn much more money writing or talking about his art than he can by practicing it."
"What the mass media offers is not popular art, but entertainment which is intended to be consumed like food, forgotten, and replaced by a new dish."