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Jul
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quotes from John Berryman’s The Dream Songs

quotes from John Berryman’s The Dream Songs

 

“Life, friends, is boring. We must not say so.
After all, the sky flashes, the great sea yearns,
we ourselves flash and yearn”

 

“These Songs are not meant to be understood, you understand.
They are only meant to terrify & comfort.”

 

“I conclude now I have no
inner resources, because I am heavy bored.
Peoples bore me,
literature bores me, especially great literature, ”

 

“Soon part of me will explore the deep and dark
Floor of the harbour . . I am everywhere,
I suffer and move, my mind and my heart move
With all that move me, under the water”

 

“Hunger was constitutional with him,
women, cigarettes, liquor, need need need
until he went to pieces.
The pieces sat up & wrote. They did not heed
their piecedom but kept very quietly on
among the chaos.”

 

“All souls converge upon a hopeless mote
tonight, as though
the throngs of souls in hopeless pain rise up
to say they cannot care, to say they abide
whatever is to come.
My air is flung with souls which will not stop
and among them hangs a soul that has not died
and refuses to come home.”

 

“The only happy people in the world
are those who do not have to write long poems”

 

 

John Allyn McAlpin Berryman  (1914-1972) was an American poet and scholar. He is considered a key figure in the “confessional” school of poetry.

On Jan. 7, 1972, he committed suicide by jumping off the Washington Avenue Bridge between St. Paul and Minneapolis.

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