On June 7th, 1917 a baby girl was born in Topeka, Kansas. Named Gwendolyn Brooks, she would grow up to write more than twenty books of poetry and win the Pulitzer Prize. Given that today is her big day, a few words …

I am a writer perhaps because I am not a talker.”

Very early in life I became fascinated with the wonders language can achieve. And I began playing with words.”

Poetry is life distilled.”

A writer should get as much education as possible, but just going to school is not enough; if it were, all owners of doctorates would be inspired writers.”

Art hurts. Art urges voyages – and it is easier to stay at home.”

Writing is delicious agony.”

I don’t want to say that these poems have to be simple, but I want to clarify my language. I want these poems to be free. I want them to be direct without sacrificing the kinds of music, the picturemaking I’ve always been interested in.”

Exhaust the little moment. Soon it dies. And be it gash or gold it will not come Again in this identical guise.”

When you love a man, he becomes more than a body. His physical limbs expand, and his outline recedes, vanishes. He is rich and sweet and right. He is part of the world, the atmosphere, the blue sky and the blue water.”

I felt that I had to write. Even if I had never been published, I knew that I would go on writing, enjoying it and experiencing the challenge.”

Reading is important–read between the lines. Don’t swallow everything.”