Literary Remains, Volume 2
It is essential to poetry that it be "simple" and appeal to the elements and primary laws of our nature; that it be "sensuous" and by its imagery elicit truth at a flash; that it be "impassioned," and be able to move our feelings and awaken our affections. In comparing different poets with each other, we should inquire which have brought into the fullest play our imagination and our reason, or have created the greatest excitement and produced the completest harmony. If we consider great exquisiteness of language and sweetness of metre alone, it is impossible to deny to Pope the character of a delightful writer; but whether he be a poet, must depend upon our definition of the word; and, doubtless, if every thing that pleases be poetry, Pope's satires and epistles must be poetry.
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