the solution is impossible

Another reason for making - and this is certainly my own reason for doing so - is as a way of understanding not entirely but a bit more clearly what resists solution. I think it's important for the maker - the poet, to stay with what I now best - to understand from the start that solution is impossible, even as he or she nevertheless attempts it. A careful calibration of humility and arrogance is required, with maybe a healthy dose of foolhardiness and/or masochism, take your pick, thrown in. Or to speak from personal experience, I tend to begin writing a poem with a sense that I know how to navigate the territory I'm entering - it's not until the end, or more likely halfway through, that I remember the truth, abandon myself again to being lost, and just hope to arrive somewhere wiser, though no less lost, in one piece.

- Carl Phillips, from his essay "Little Gods of Making" in The Art of Daring: Risk, Restlessness, Imagination (Graywolf, 2014).

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