A poet has no private life to speak of. He uses his feelings, which then, like acids, release meanings from his own and from others’ bodies, filtering out the essential materials from which he creates his poems, volatile non-existent objects. And then from all of that, something that reminds one of life.
There is no doubt that the artist can only win recognition before posterity in the first and the last place through his works, but it is equally doubtless that if literary history thinks in a truly historical kind of way, the life of a writer must also be seen as one of his works: the writer is not only the paper printed full of text, he is also the symbolic flower and fruit of history, his body, his illnesses, his human struggles are works no less than his poems or his plays.
I produced a list of the six most popular basic themes to be found in lyrical poetry, ranking them, as I went along, in order of frequency. These were the candidates: 1. You are beautiful and I love you; 2. You don’t love me; 3. I don’t love you; 4. I am immortal; 5. Carpe diem; 6. The changes of the seasons.