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Nina Cassian

"It was a love like a chord from Bach, / of such pure gravity ... "

Nina Cassian, "It was a love" (1963), Call Yourself Alive? (1988)

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"My linguistic protest / has no power. / The enemy is illiterate."

Nina Cassian, "Vowel," Call Yourself Alive? (1988)

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"I am subjective, intimate, private, particular, / confessional. / All that happens, / happens to me. / ... / If you're interested / in birds, trees, rivers, / try reference books. / Don't read my poems."

Nina Cassian, "Ars poetica -- a polemic," Cheerleader for a Funeral (1992)

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"poets, / these species, these sepias / whose self defense / is splashing ink."

Nina Cassian, "Poets," Cheerleader for a Funeral (1992)

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"With a triumphant smile, / I confront time / as its edged diamond / sculpts my features."

Nina Cassian, "Poets," Cheerleader for a Funeral (1992)

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"I am greedy. Puritans scold me / for running breathlessly / over life's table of contents / and for wishing and longing for everything."

Nina Cassian, "Greed," in The New Yorker (1990)

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Nina Cassian, Romanian-born poet, translator, composer, journalist, film critic
(1924 - 2014)

Full name: Renée Annie Stefanescu Cassian.