I would argue that most piercing lyric poets don’t speak in the “proper” language of their time. Emily Dickinson didn’t write in proper English grammar but in slant music of fragmentary perception. Kit Smart’s endless lists and Whitman’s numbering of months in Leaves of Grass are hardly in the language their contemporaries knew. César Vallejo placed three dots in the middle of the line, as if language itself were not enough, as if the poet’s voice needed to leap from one image to another to make—to use Eliot’s phrase—a raid on the inarticulate.

Ilya Kaminsky, “Of Strangeness That Wakes Us”