Writer’s Quote Wednesday – Intellect

Today’s Writer’s Quote Wednesday is from Anne Sexton:


“Watch out for intellect, because it knows so much it knows nothing and leaves you hanging upside down… .”

We must not assume that prominence only comes from the intelligent of the world because it is not always about intellect as we may define it. Not always about the knowledgeable, the College graduate, the well-educated, or the well-spoken. Most of the people, who become great historical figures, entrepreneurs, etc., are actually those who are deemed least intelligent by the world status. They are people who have a much more simplicity of character than the general population of their peers. They may be the High School drop-out, the ill, the down trodden, the specially educated, or the lowly in spirit.

Take Anne Sexton for example. Born Ann Grey Harvey, Anne suffered from mental illness for most of her life, breaking down twice following the birth of her children per postpartum depression. As a result, her doctor encouraged her to write poetry which some say helped her to endure life for as long as she did. Her style of poetry has been attributed to Confessional Poetry, defined as:

“Confessional poetry or ‘Confessionalism’ is a style of poetry that emerged in the United States during the 1950s. It has been described as poetry “of the personal,” focusing on extreme moments of individual experience, the psyche, and personal trauma, including previously taboo matters such as mental illness, sexuality, and suicide, often set in relation to broader social themes. It is sometimes also classified as Postmodernism.” – (Internet)

“…mouthing knowledge as your heart falls out of your mouth.”

A man’s speech is always dictated by his heart. A man can proclaim to know all, yet his foolishness can be easily uncovered by the very words he speaks; by the very knowledge he tosses into the air.

In closing, Anne studied with Robert Lowell at Boston University alongside distinguished poets Sylvia Plath and George Starbuck.

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I write to restore Black Historical Truth for the freedom of all people. Visit me online at yecheilyahysrayl.com and @yecheilyah on IG and Twitter.

7 thoughts on “Writer’s Quote Wednesday – Intellect”

  1. I got goose bumps reading your post, and Anne Sexton’s quote! WOW! I love the Beat Poets of the 1960’s because of their honest take in displaying the grittiness of the world. Allen Ginsberg is one of my favorites. His words are raw. Thank you for sharing her quote. I also think there is a thin line between genius and insanity… <3 That surely explains a lot.

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