John Gould Fletcher

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Fletcher circa 1917

John Gould Fletcher (January 3, 1886May 10, 1950) was an Imagist poet, author and authority on modern painting.


  • Imagism was not Symbolism, but it proceeds from it
    • Three Imagist Poets, The Little Review, 1916
  • I should strive (on reading a book of poetry) to evoke the a soul out of this piece of inanimate matter,a something characteristic and structural inherent in this organic form which is friendly to me and responds to my mood.
    • Preface to Goblins and Pagodas, 1916
  • Poetry merely descriptive of nature, however vivid, no longer seems enough for me, there has to be added to it, the human judgement, the human evaluation.
    • Life is My Song, John Gould Fletcher, Autobiography, 1937

Preface to Irradiations; Sand and Spray, 1915[edit]

  • To begin with, the basis of English poetry is rhythm, or, as some would prefer to call it, cadence. This rhythm is obtained by mingling stressed and unstressed syllables.
  • It is time to create something new. It is time to strip poetry of meaningless tatters of form, and to clothe her in new, suitable garments.
  • It is America's opportunity to lay the foundations for a new flowering of English verse, and to lay them as broad as they are strong.

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