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Favorite poem thread?
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Favorite poem thread?
Here's one of my favorites by Oscar Wilde

Thou knowest all; I seek in vain
What lands to till or sow with seed -
The land is black with briar and weed,
Nor cares for falling tears or rain.
Thou knowest all; I sit and wait
With blinded eyes and hands that fail,
Till the last lifting of the veil
And the first opening of the gate.
Thou knowest all; I cannot see.
I trust I shall not live in vain,
I know that we shall meet again
In some divine eternity.
Michael Drayton, "The Paradox"

When first I ended, then I first began;
Then more I travelled further from my rest.
Where most I lost, there most of all I won,
Pined with hunger, rising from a feast.
Methinks I fly, yet want I legs to go;
Wise in conceit, in act a very sot;
Ravished with joy amidst a hell of woe;
What most I seem, that surest I am not.

I build my hopes a world above the sky,
Yet with the mole I creep into the earth;
In plenty, I am starved with penury,
And yet I surfeit in the greatest dearth.
I have, I want; despair, and yet desire;
Burned in a sea of ice, and drowned amidst a fire.
Lord Byron, "Don Juan", 4.xi-xii

The Heart--which may be broken: happy they!
Thrice fortunate! who of that fragile mould,
The precious porcelain of human clay,
Break with the first fall: they can ne'er behold
The long year linked with heavy day on day,
And all which must be borne, and never told;
While Life's strange principle will often lie
Deepest in those who long the most to die.

"Whom the gods love die young," was said of yore,
And many deaths do they escape by this:
The death of friends, and that which slays even more--
The death of Friendship, Love, Youth, all that is,
Except mere breath; and since the silent shore
Awaits at last even those who longest miss
The old Archer's shafts, perhaps the early grave
Which men weep over may be meant to save.
Absolutely beautiful piece
This is the funniest thing I've read today. Christ that's sad.
Philip Larkin, "When first we faced"

When first we faced, and touching showed
How well we knew the early moves,
Behind the moonlight and the frost,
The excitement and the gratitude,
There stood how much our meeting owed
To other meetings, other loves.

The decades of a different life
That opened past your inch-close eyes
Belonged to others, lavished, lost;
Nor could I hold you hard enough
To call my years of hunger-strife
Back for your mouth to colonise.

Admitted: and the pain is real.
But when did love not try to change
The world back to itself—no cost,
No past, no people else at all—
Only what meeting made us feel,
So new, and gentle-sharp, and strange?
John Milton, "On His Blindness"

When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one Talent which is death to hide
Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest He returning chide,
"Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?"
I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies, "God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts. Who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly: thousands at his bidding speed,
And post o'er land and ocean without rest;
They also serve who only stand and wait."
I fucking love this poem, sorry my tablet doesn't let me copy an paste it. Check it out tho


I really liked this new poem in the latest Poetry Magazine issue.

From “understory”

for my pregnant wife, nālani, during her second trimester

nālani and
i walk

to our
small community

garden plot
in mānoa—

the seed
packets in

my pocket
sound like

a baby’s
toy rattle—

when do
they spray

glyphosate along
the sidewalks?

from kunia
to waimea,

fifty thousand
acres of

gmo fields—
how will

open air
pesticide drift

affect our
unborn daughter,

whose nerve
endings are

just beginning
to root?—

we plant
seeds in

rows, soil
gathers under

our fingernails—
syngenta, dupont,

dow, pioneer,
basf, monsanto

$240 million
seed sector—

corn for
cattle feed

and syrup—
runoff turns

[our] streams

heart sea

urchins die off—
what will

our daughter
be able

to plant
in this

paradise of
fugitive dust—
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I know right haha. It reminds me of why I read poetry.

Lord Byron was a good lookin' man
>Pic related

Reminds me of the last woman I had loved.

I can imagine someone at a poetry slam reciting this on stage.
Would be amazing to listen and watch.
I fucking love this poem, sorry my tablet doesn't let me copy an paste it. Check it out tho

Winter Remembered
by John Crowe Ransom
Two evils, monstrous either one apart,
Possessed me, and were long and loath at going:
A cry of Absence, Absence, in the heart,
And in the wood the furious winter blowing.

Think not, when fire was bright upon my bricks,
And past the tight boards hardly a wind could enter,
I glowed like them, the simple burning sticks,
Far from my cause, my proper heat and center.

Better to walk forth in the frozen air
And wash my wound in the snows; that would be healing;
Because my heart would throb less painful there,
Being caked with cold, and past the smart of feeling.

And where I walked, the murderous winter blast
Would have this body bowed, these eyeballs streaming,
And though I think this heart’s blood froze not fast
It ran too small to spare one drop for dreaming.

Dear love, these fingers that had known your touch,
And tied our separate forces first together,
Were ten poor idiot fingers not worth much,
Ten frozen parsnips hanging in the weather.

> thinking it's some obscure poem
> literally the one poem everyone learns in high school

why couldn't you just name the poem
Spring Remembered by George Dillon

If indeed the heart is dust-
Simple earth for all its throes-
Let it succor, as earth does
Any who will wait and trust.

If indeed kind words are vain,
Fruitless, willow-trivial --still,
Let them bear, as willows will,
Beauty that is balm for pain.

And if beauty, autumn-wise,
Blows but to an ashen end,
Let me keep against the wind
Spring remembered in my eyes.
Mnemosyne by Trumbull Stickney

It’s autumn in the country I remember.

How warm a wind blew here about the ways!
And shadows on the hillside lay to slumber
During the long sun-sweetened summer-days.

It’s cold abroad the country I remember.

The swallows veering skimmed the golden grain
At midday with a wing aslant and limber;
And yellow cattle browsed upon the plain.

It’s empty down the country I remember.

I had a sister lovely in my sight:
Her hair was dark, her eyes were very sombre;
We sang together in the woods at night.

It’s lonely in the country I remember.

The babble of our children fills my ears,
And on our hearth I stare the perished ember
To flames that show all starry thro’ my tears.

It’s dark about the country I remember.

There are the mountains where I lived. The path
Is slushed with cattle-tracks and fallen timber,
The stumps are twisted by the tempests’ wrath.

But that I knew these places are my own,
I’d ask how came such wretchedness to cumber
The earth, and I to people it alone.

It rains across the country I remember.
Charles Baudelaire, "L'Ennemi", trans. Lewis Piaget Shanks

my youth was all a murky hurricane;
not oft did the suns of splendour burst the gloom;
so wild the lightning raged, so fierce the rain,
few crimson fruits my garden-close illume.

now I have touched the autumn of the mind,
I must repair and smooth the earth, to save
my little seed-plot, torn and undermined,
guttered and gaping like an open grave.

and will the flowers all my dreams implore
draw from this garden wasted like a shore
some rich mysterious power the storm imparts?

— o grief! o grief! time eats away our lives,
and the dark Enemy gnawing at our hearts
sucks from our blood the strength whereon he thrives!
Cuz im a drunk faggot okay!! I never learned it in school, it's still my favorite that I've read though
And no faggot I know T.S. Elliot is well known I just don't know how many have read tjis one...its the best btw
You know John Crowe Ransom did a good job writing this when you can feel the cold going through your fingers.
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Here's another one of my favorites

A Question by Robert Frost

A voice said, Look me in the stars
And tell me truly, men of earth,
If all the soul-and-body scars
Were not too much to pay for birth.

It's so simple yet so pure. I love it.
Geoffrey Chaucer, "Complaint to His Purse"

To yow, my purse, and to noon other wight
Complayne I, for ye be my lady dere!
I am so sory, now that ye been lyght;
For certes, but ye make me hevy chere,
Me were as leef be layd upon my bere;
For which unto your mercy thus I crye:
Beth hevy ageyn, or elles mot I dye!

Now voucheth sauf this day, or yt be nyght,
That I of yow the blisful soun may here,
Or see your colour lyk the sonne bryght,
That of yelownesse hadde never pere.
Ye be my lyf, ye be myn hertes stere,
Quene of comfort and of good companye:
Beth hevy ageyn, or elles moote I dye!

Now purse, that ben to me my lyves lyght
And saveour, as doun in this world here,
Out of this toune helpe me thurgh your myght,
Syn that ye wole nat ben my tresorere;
For I am shave as nye as any frere.
But yet I pray unto your curtesye:
Beth hevy agen, or elles moote I dye!

Lenvoy de Chaucer
O conquerour of Brutes Albyon,
Which that by lyne and free eleccion
Been verray kyng, this song to yow I sende;
And ye, that mowen alle oure harmes amende,
Have mynde upon my supplication!

you might like this John Skelton poem:

Ay, beshrew you! by my fay,
These wanton clerks be nice alway!
Avaunt, avaunt, my popinjay!
What, will ye do nothing but play?
Tilly, vally, straw, let be I say!
Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery Milk and Ale.

By God, ye be a pretty pode,
And I love you an whole cart-load.
Straw, James Foder, ye play the fode,
I am no hackney for your rod:
Go watch a bull, your back is broad!
Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery Milk and Ale.

Ywis ye deal uncourteously;
What, would ye frumple me? now fy!
What, and ye shall be my pigesnye?
By Christ, ye shall not, no hardely:
I will not be japèd bodily!
Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery Milk and Ale.

Walk forth your way, ye cost me nought;
Now have I found that I have sought:
The best cheap flesh that I ever bought.
Yet, for his love that all hath wrought,
Wed me, or else I die for thought.
Gup, Christian Clout, your breath is stale!
Go, Mannerly Margery Milk and Ale!
Gup, Christian Clout, gup, Jack of the Vale!
With Mannerly Margery Milk and Ale.
i like it

baudelaire is always great
>baudelaire is always great

It's the translation in particular that's good.
baudelaire is best in his native language, m8
Trippers and askers surround me,
People I meet, the effect upon me of my early life or the ward and city I live in, or the nation,
The latest dates, discoveries, inventions, societies, authors old and new,
My dinner, dress, associates, looks, compliments, dues,
The real or fancied indifference of some man or woman I love,
The sickness of one of my folks or of myself, or ill-doing or loss or lack of money, or depressions or exaltations,
Battles, the horrors of fratricidal war, the fever of doubtful news, the fitful events;
These come to me days and nights and go from me again,
But they are not the Me myself.
Apart from the pulling and hauling stands what I am,
Stands amused, complacent, compassionating, idle, unitary,
Looks down, is erect, or bends an arm on an impalpable certain rest,
Looking with side-curved head curious what will come next,
Both in and out of the game and watching and wondering at it.
Backward I see in my own days where I sweated through fog with linguists and contenders,
I have no mockings or arguments, I witness and wait.

- Walt Whitman, Song Of Myself
Love Walt Whitman

Because if you add more spaces ad indents it makes it a better literary work. Fuuuuuck yooou.

You probably like slam poetry and bongos.

When lying in sunlight, I read to my girlfriend. Nothing pretentious. Just us, the warmth, my voice. Leaves of Grass is our favorite for it. I read until she falls asleep, and never find my place.
"On Living" by Nazim Hikmet


Living is no laughing matter:
you must live with great seriousness
like a squirrel, for example--
I mean without looking for something beyond and above living,
I mean living must be your whole occupation.
Living is no laughing matter:
you must take it seriously,
so much so and to such a degree
that, for example, your hands tied behind your back,
your back to the wall,
or else in a laboratory
in your white coat and safety glasses,
you can die for people--
even for people whose faces you’ve never seen,
even though you know living
is the most real, the most beautiful thing.
I mean, you must take living so seriously
that even at seventy, for example, you’ll plant olive trees--
and not for your children, either,
but because although you fear death you don’t believe it,
because living, I mean, weighs heavier.

Let’s say we’re seriously ill, need surgery--
which is to say we might not get up
from the white table.
Even though it’s impossible not to feel sad
about going a little too soon,
we’ll still laugh at the jokes being told,
we’ll look out the window to see if it’s raining,
or still wait anxiously
for the latest newscast. . .
Let’s say we’re at the front--
for something worth fighting for, say.
There, in the first offensive, on that very day,
we might fall on our face, dead.
We’ll know this with a curious anger,
but we’ll still worry ourselves to death
about the outcome of the war, which could last years.
Let’s say we’re in prison
and close to fifty,
and we have eighteen more years, say,
before the iron doors will open.
We’ll still live with the outside,
with its people and animals, struggle and wind--
I mean with the outside beyond the walls.
I mean, however and wherever we are,
we must live as if we will never die.

This earth will grow cold,
a star among stars
and one of the smallest,
a gilded mote on blue velvet--
I mean this, our great earth.
This earth will grow cold one day,
not like a block of ice
or a dead cloud even
but like an empty walnut it will roll along
in pitch-black space . . .
You must grieve for this right now
--you have to feel this sorrow now--
for the world must be loved this much
if you’re going to say “I lived”. . .
I'm not even the biggest Whitman fan to be honest. My friend showed me that passage while we were tripping on acid and it stuck with me. I need to read some more of his stuff.
If you want to read it with the formatting intact: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/living
John Crowe Ransom is top tier tbqh

Captain Carpenter rose up in his prime
Put on his pistols and went riding out
But had got wellnigh nowhere at that time
Till he fell in with ladies in a rout.

It was a pretty lady and all her train
That played with him so sweetly but before
An hour she'd taken a sword with all her main
And twined him of his nose for evermore.

Captain Carpenter mounted up one day
And rode straightway into a stranger rogue
That looked unchristian but be that as may
The Captain did not wait upon prologue.

But drew upon him out of his great heart
The other swung against him with a club
And cracked his two legs at the shinny part
And let him roll and stick like any tub.

Captain Carpenter rode many a time
From male and female took he sundry harms
He met the wife of Satan crying "I'm
The she-wolf bids you shall bear no more arms.

Their strokes and counters whistled in the wind
I wish he had delivered half his blows
But where she should have made off like a hind
The bitch bit off his arms at the elbows.

And Captain Carpenter parted with his ears
To a black devil that used him in this wise
O Jesus ere his threescore and ten years
Another had plucked out his sweet blue eyes.

Captain Carpenter got up on his roan
And sallied from the gate in hell's despite
I heard him asking in the grimmest tone
If any enemy yet there was to fight?

"To any adversary it is fame
If he risk to be wounded by my tongue
Or burnt in two beneath my red heart's flame
Such are the perils he is cast among.

"But if he can he has a pretty choice
From an anatomy with little to lose
Whether he cut my tongue and take my voice
Or whether it be my round red heart he choose. "

It was the neatest knave that ever was seen
Stepping in perfume from his lady's bower
Who at this word put in his merry mien
And fell on Captain Carpenter like a tower.

I would not knock old fellows in the dust
But there lay Captain Carpenter on his back
His weapons were the old heart in his bust
And a blade shook between rotten teeth alack.

The rogue in scarlet and grey soon knew his mind.
He wished to get his trophy and depart
With gentle apology and touch refined
He pierced him and produced the Captain's heart.

God's mercy rest on Captain Carpenter now (a,
I thought him Sirs an honest gentleman
Citizen husband soldier and scholar enow
Let jangling kites eat of him if they can.

But God's deep curses follow after those
That shore him of his goodly nose and ears
His legs and strong arms at the two elbows
And eyes that had not watered seventy years.

The curse of hell upon the sleek upstart
That got the Captain finally on his back
And took the red red vitals of his heart
And made the kites to whet their beaks clack clack.
I wish more of the women I've dated enjoyed poetry as much as I do.
Unfortunately I've been rather unlucky.

You should read more of his work.
He's a great poet.
Never heard of this guy. Is all his poetry this good?
Literally everyone is you utter imbecile. Nevertheless this is a singularly good translation, which is also rarely seen, which is why I posted it.

That's actually pretty funny. She doesn't read often, but I've got her to read Vonnegut, 1984, and Von Sacher-Masoch. Doesn't like poetry. She just likes cuddling and the sound of my voice.
nah, it's a pretty shit translation
Amen brother.
Physical interaction definitely helps with the swooning while reciting poetry to a significant other.
Marquez prefers the english translation of 100 Years of Solitude. You utter imbecile.
And how about Conrad and Nabokov?
Another one of my favorite poems by Robert Frost.

The Cocoon

As far as I can see this autumn haze
That spreading in the evening air both way,
Makes the new moon look anything but new,
And pours the elm-tree meadow full of blue,
Is all the smoke from one poor house alone
With but one chimney it can call its own;
So close it will not light an early light,
Keeping its life so close and out of sign
No one for hours has set a foot outdoors
So much as to take care of evening chores.
The inmates may be lonely women-folk.
I want to tell them that with all this smoke
They prudently are spinning their cocoon
And anchoring it to an earth and moon
From which no winter gale can hope to blow it,--
Spinning their own cocoon did they but know it.

The poem certainly contrasts the way people can be too absorbed into work to the point of enslaving oneself.
The ideology behind it all captures a lot of mix feelings within me personally.
It can be interpreted several different ways as well which is probably why I enjoy this one so much.


I posted it as bait

I'm actually really made at how bad the poems in Poetry are now



read Bloom's little book of Whitman where he selects whitman's best. I checked it out a few months ago, sorry I forget the name of it, but it's like American Poets Library or something like that iirc. Bloom is pretty right to say that Whitman has about 20 good poems and 400 mediocre ones, so he picks all the good ones.


Robert Frost was kind of weak when it came to end-rhymes and it shows really hard in this one:

>anything but new,
>meadow full of blue,

not very pleasing.

That said at his best he's a very confident poet, like in Directive.


so is this like the turkish Billy Collins then?
I'm looking at the meaning and message in that particular poem over two lines that have an off rhyme.
In poetry it's all about the message.
While the rhyme is an added bonus, it's not necessary if it makes you think.
>While the rhyme is an added bonus, it's not necessary if it makes you think.

I don't disagree. I'm saying that it's only an added bonus if it's done well. It's not done well, so it's jarring. It'd be better in blank verse.

> In poetry it's all about the message.

In good formal verse, every little blip and mutation of the form has to do with the message. Rhyming two words draws them together, and their ideas. Reversing an iamb into a trochee can draw attention to a specific feature. Etc. Poetry 101
In the end it goes down to perspective.
Some follow a key set of rules
Some riff off their heartstrings
Others like to watch the world burn
And some incorporate all of the above.
Great thing about poetry is they're no specific way of doing it.
But that's entirely left to an opinion.
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My favorite poem is actually Lady Lazarius by Sylvia Plath but this one is pretty fucking great as well.

By the time you swear you're his,
Shivering and sighing,
And he vows his passion is
Infinite, undying -
Lady, make a note of this:
One of you is lying.

Dorothy Parker
She's a brilliant poet, this one is pretty straight forward but she's incredibly witty, check her out if you haven't.
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studied this at school and university, have always loved Keats - really cheesy when they stuck this poem in Californication though, still the best tv series ever.

O WHAT can ail thee, knight-at-arms,
Alone and palely loitering?
The sedge has wither’d from the lake,
And no birds sing.


O what can ail thee, knight-at-arms! 5
So haggard and so woe-begone?
The squirrel’s granary is full,
And the harvest’s done.


I see a lily on thy brow
With anguish moist and fever dew, 10
And on thy cheeks a fading rose
Fast withereth too.


I met a lady in the meads,
Full beautiful—a faery’s child,
Her hair was long, her foot was light, 15
And her eyes were wild.


I made a garland for her head,
And bracelets too, and fragrant zone;
She look’d at me as she did love,
And made sweet moan. 20


I set her on my pacing steed,
And nothing else saw all day long,
For sidelong would she bend, and sing
A faery’s song.


She found me roots of relish sweet, 25
And honey wild, and manna dew,
And sure in language strange she said—
“I love thee true.”


She took me to her elfin grot,
And there she wept, and sigh’d fill sore, 30
And there I shut her wild wild eyes
With kisses four.


And there she lulled me asleep,
And there I dream’d—Ah! woe betide!
The latest dream I ever dream’d 35
On the cold hill’s side.


I saw pale kings and princes too,
Pale warriors, death-pale were they all;
They cried—“La Belle Dame sans Merci
Hath thee in thrall!” 40


I saw their starved lips in the gloam,
With horrid warning gaped wide,
And I awoke and found me here,
On the cold hill’s side.


And this is why I sojourn here, 45
Alone and palely loitering,
Though the sedge is wither’d from the lake,
And no birds sing.

All. This. Prose.

and they're still better in their original language, regardless of what Marquez said -- an author's opinion of his own work hasn't been relevant since Arnold was around. And Nabokov's translations of his own works are infamously bad...
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The willows carried a slow sound,
A sarabande the wind mowed on the mead.
I could never remember
That seething, steady leveling of the marshes
Till age had brought me to the sea.

Flags, weeds. And remembrance of steep alcoves
Where cypresses shared the noon’s
Tyranny; they drew me into hades almost.
And mammoth turtles climbing sulphur dreams
Yielded, while sun-silt rippled them
Asunder ...

How much I would have bartered! the black gorge
And all the singular nestings in the hills
Where beavers learn stitch and tooth.
The pond I entered once and quickly fled—
I remember now its singing willow rim.

And finally, in that memory all things nurse;
After the city that I finally passed
With scalding unguents spread and smoking darts
The monsoon cut across the delta
At gulf gates ... There, beyond the dykes

I heard wind flaking sapphire, like this summer,
And willows could not hold more steady sound.

wilde btfo
can someone explain this to me? I don't get it..
Me neither

Here is a doge meme
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