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Best Famous Charles Simic Poems


Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Charles Simic poems. This is a select list of the best famous Charles Simic poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Charles Simic poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of Charles Simic poems.

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by Charles Simic |

Hotel Insomnia

 I liked my little hole,
Its window facing a brick wall.
Next door there was a piano.
A few evenings a month
a crippled old man came to play
"My Blue Heaven."

Mostly, though, it was quiet.
Each room with its spider in heavy overcoat
Catching his fly with a web
Of cigarette smoke and revery.
So dark,
I could not see my face in the shaving mirror.

At 5 A.M. the sound of bare feet upstairs.
The "Gypsy" fortuneteller,
Whose storefront is on the corner,
Going to pee after a night of love.
Once, too, the sound of a child sobbing.
So near it was, I thought
For a moment, I was sobbing myself.


by Charles Simic |

Private Eye

 To find clues where there are none,
That's my job now, I said to the
Dictionary on my desk. The world beyond
My window has grown illegible,
And so has the clock on the wall.
I may strike a match to orient myself

In the meantime, there's the heart
Stopping hush as the building
Empties, the elevators stop running,
The grains of dust stay put.
Hours of quiescent sleuthing
Before the Madonna with the mop

Shuffles down the long corridor
Trying doorknobs, turning mine.
That's just little old me sweating
In the customer's chair, I'll say.
Keep your nose out of it.
I'm not closing up till he breaks.


by Charles Simic |

Country Fair

 for Hayden Carruth

If you didn't see the six-legged dog,
It doesn't matter.
We did, and he mostly lay in the corner.
As for the extra legs,

One got used to them quickly
And thought of other things.
Like, what a cold, dark night
To be out at the fair.

Then the keeper threw a stick
And the dog went after it
On four legs, the other two flapping behind,
Which made one girl shriek with laughter.

She was drunk and so was the man
Who kept kissing her neck.
The dog got the stick and looked back at us.
And that was the whole show.


by Charles Simic |

Poem Without A Title

 I say to the lead
Why did you let yourself
Be cast into a bullet?
Have you forgotten the alchemists?
Have you given up hope
In turning into gold?

Nobody answers.
Lead. Bullet. With names
Such as these
The sleep is deep and long.


by Charles Simic |

The Supreme Moment

 As an ant is powerless 
Against a raised boot, 
And only has an instant 
To have a bright idea or two. 
The black boot so polished, 
He can see himself 
Reflected in it, distorted, 
Perhaps made larger 
Into a huge monster ant 
Shaking his arms and legs 
Threateningly? 

The boot may be hesitating, 
Demurring, having misgivings, 
Gathering cobwebs, 
Dew? 
Yes, and apparently no.


by Charles Simic |

Clouds Gathering

 It seemed the kind of life we wanted.
Wild strawberries and cream in the morning.
Sunlight in every room.
The two of us walking by the sea naked.

Some evenings, however, we found ourselves
Unsure of what comes next.
Like tragic actors in a theater on fire,
With birds circling over our heads,
The dark pines strangely still,
Each rock we stepped on bloodied by the sunset.

We were back on our terrace sipping wine.
Why always this hint of an unhappy ending?
Clouds of almost human appearance
Gathering on the horizon, but the rest lovely
With the air so mild and the sea untroubled.

The night suddenly upon us, a starless night.
You lighting a candle, carrying it naked
Into our bedroom and blowing it out quickly.
The dark pines and grasses strangely still.


by Charles Simic |

The Partial Explanation

 Seems like a long time
Since the waiter took my order.
Grimy little luncheonette,
The snow falling outside.

Seems like it has grown darker
Since I last heard the kitchen door
Behind my back
Since I last noticed
Anyone pass on the street.

A glass of ice-water
Keeps me company
At this table I chose myself
Upon entering.

And a longing,
Incredible longing
To eavesdrop
On the conversation
Of cooks.


by Charles Simic |

Wherein Obscurely

 On the road with billowing poplars,
In a country flat and desolate
To the far-off gray horizon, wherein obscurely,
A man and a woman went on foot,

Each carrying a small suitcase.
They were tired and had taken off
Their shoes and were walking on
Their toes, staring straight ahead.

Every time a car passed fast,
As they're wont to on such a stretch of
Road, empty as the crow flies,
How quickly they were gone--

The cars, I mean, and then the drizzle
That brought on the early evening,
Little by little, and hardly a light
Anywhere, and then not even that.


by Charles Simic |

Eyes Fastened With Pins

 How much death works,
No one knows what a long
Day he puts in. The little
Wife always alone
Ironing death's laundry.
The beautiful daughters
Setting death's supper table.
The neighbors playing
Pinochle in the backyard
Or just sitting on the steps
Drinking beer. Death,
Meanwhile, in a strange
Part of town looking for
Someone with a bad cough,
But the address somehow wrong,
Even death can't figure it out
Among all the locked doors... 
And the rain beginning to fall.
Long windy night ahead.
Death with not even a newspaper
To cover his head, not even
A dime to call the one pining away,
Undressing slowly, sleepily,
And stretching naked
On death's side of the bed.


by Charles Simic |

Heights Of Folly

 O crows circling over my head and cawing!
I admit to being, at times,
Suddenly, and without the slightest warning,
Exceedingly happy.

On a morning otherwise sunless,
Strolling arm in arm
Past some gallows-shaped trees
With my dear Helen,
Who is also a strange bird,

With a feeling of being summoned
Urgently, but by a most gracious invitation
To breakfast on slices of watermelon
In the company of naked gods and goddesses
On a patch of last night's snow.