Writer’s Quote Wednesday – Derek Walcott

Today’s quote for Writer’s Quote Wednesday is from Poet and Playwright Derek Walcott:

Bucknell University. (Photos by Timothy D. and Nicole M. Sofranko)

“… the truest writers are those who see language not as a linguistic process but as a living element….” – Derek Walcott

I think this is such a great motivational quote for writers. It has a way about it that can be explained in much more detail than what I can give but in short, it reminds me of the living attribute of words. Just the power of words and how breathing language is. I think that when we seek to create vision for the reader it’s much more than the language aspect in the literal form. It is not merely collaborating strings of words together for English sake, but it is feeling. Experiencing the moment and then putting that moment into words. Personally, I think some of my best writing has occurred during times where I did not purposely set out to write, but the language itself was so moving, and so feeling, that I simply had to.

About the Author (from Poets.org)


“The recipient of the 1992 Nobel Prize in Literature, Derek Walcott was born in Castries, Saint Lucia, the West Indies, on January 23, 1930. His first published poem, “1944” appeared in The Voice of St. Lucia when he was fourteen years old, and consisted of 44 lines of blank verse. By the age of nineteen, Walcott had self published two volumes, 25 Poems (1948) and Epitaph for the Young: XII Cantos (1949), exhibiting a wide range of influences, including William Shakespeare, T. S. Eliot, and Ezra Pound.

He later attended the University of the West Indies, having received a Colonial Development and Welfare scholarship, and in 1951 published the volume Poems.

The founder of the Trinidad Theater Workshop, Walcott has also written several plays produced throughout the United States, The Odyssey: A Stage Version (1992); The Isle is Full of Noises (1982); Remembrance and Pantomime (1980); The Joker of Seville and O Babylon! (1978); Dream on Monkey Mountain and Other Plays (1970); Three Plays: The Last Carnival; Beef, No Chicken; and A Branch of the Blue Nile (1969). His play Dream on Monkey Mountain won the Obie Award for distinguished foreign play of 1971. He founded Boston Playwrights’ Theater at Boston University in 1981.

About his work, the poet Joseph Brodsky said, “For almost forty years his throbbing and relentless lines kept arriving in the English language like tidal waves, coagulating into an archipelago of poems without which the map of modern literature would effectively match wallpaper. He gives us more than himself or ‘a world’; he gives us a sense of infinity embodied in the language.”

He currently divides his time between his home in St. Lucia and New York City.


And that’s it for Writer’s Quote Wednesday!


Don’t forget to check out Colleen on Silver Threading to see how you can join the fun.


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I write Black Historical Fiction, Poetry, and Inspirational Non-Fiction for the Freedom of all People. Visit me on the web at yecheilyahysrayl.com/

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