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“I once asked another fine writer of the American South, Eudora Welty, if Faulkner had been a help or a hindrance to her. ‘Neither one,’ she replied. ‘It’s like knowing there’s a great mountain in the neighborhood. It’s good to know it’s there, but it doesn’t help you to do your work.'”

“When the imagination is given sight by passion, it sees darkness as well as light. To feel so ferociously is to feel contempt as well as pride, hatred as well as love. These proud contempts, this hating love, often earn the writer the nation’s wrath. The nation requires anthems, flags. The poet offers discord. Rags.”

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