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Anthony Hecht

It doesn't seem to me strange that children should like the macabre, the sensational, and the forbidden.

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Poetry operates by hints and dark suggestions. It is full of secrets and hidden formulae, like a witch's brew.

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Children know from a remarkably early age that things are being kept from them, that grown-ups participate in a world of mysteries.

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There's not a good poet I know who has not at the beck and call of his memory a vast quantity of poetry that composes his mental library.

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Mysteries, like the Masonic rites, are ones parents and elders are sworn not to reveal to the uninitiated, which include all children. And so we sought for signs.

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A lot of the fun lies in trying to penetrate the mystery; and this is best done by saying over the lines to yourself again and again, till they pass through the stage of sounding like nonsense, and finally return to a full sense that had at first escaped notice.

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