Submit Your Poems
Get Your Premium Membership

Best Famous Louise Bogan Poems

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

Search for the best famous Louise Bogan poems, articles about Louise Bogan poems, poetry blogs, or anything else Louise Bogan poem related using the PoetrySoup search engine at the top of the page.

See also: Best Member Poems

Go Back

by Louise Bogan | |

Portrait

 A child draws the outline of a body.
She draws what she can, but it is white all through, she cannot fill in what she knows is there.
Within the unsupported line, she knows that life is missing; she has cut one background from another.
Like a child, she turns to her mother.
And you draw the heart against the emptiness she has created.


by Louise Bogan | |

The Dream

 I WOKE to find my pillow wet
 With the tears for deeds deep hid in sleep.
I knew no sorrow here, but yet The tears fell softly through the deep.
Your eyes, your other eyes of dream, Looked at me through the veil of blank; I saw their joyous, starlit gleam Like one who watches rank on rank.
His victor airy legions wind And pass before his awful throne— Was there thy loving heart unkind, Was I thy captive all o’erthrown?


by Louise Bogan | |

The Dream

 I have a dream
to fill the golden sheath
of a remembered day.
.
.
.
(Air heavy and massed and blue as the vapor of opium.
.
.
domes fired in sulphurous mist.
.
.
sea quiescent as a gray seal.
.
.
and the emerging sun spurting up gold over Sydney, smoke-pale, rising out of the bay.
.
.
.
) But the day is an up-turned cup and its sun a junk of red iron guttering in sluggish-green water-- where shall I pour my dream?


by Louise Bogan | |

Knowledge

 Now that I know
How passion warms little
Of flesh in the mould,
And treasure is brittle,--

I'll lie here and learn
How, over their ground
Trees make a long shadow
And a light sound.


by Louise Bogan | |

Epitaph For A Romantic Woman

 She has attained the permanence 
She dreamed of, where old stones lie sunning.
Untended stalks blow over her Even and swift, like young men running.
Always in the heart she loved Others had lived, -- she heard their laughter.
She lies where none has lain before, Where certainly none will follow after.


by Louise Bogan | |

Sonnet

 FLESH, I have knocked at many a dusty door, 
Gone down full many a midnight lane, 
Probed in old walls and felt along the floor, 
Pressed in blind hope the lighted window-pane, 
But useless all, though sometimes when the moon 
Was full in heaven and the sea was full, 
Along my body's alleys came a tune 
Played in the tavern by the Beautiful.
Then for an instant I have felt at point To find and seize her, whosoe'er she be, Whether some saint whose glory doth anoint Those whom she loves, or but a part of me, Or something that the things not understood Make for their uses out of flesh and blood.


by Louise Bogan | |

The Dream

 Love, if I weep it will not matter,
 And if you laugh I shall not care;
Foolish am I to think about it,
 But it is good to feel you there.
Love, in my sleep I dreamed of waking,— White and awful the moonlight reached Over the floor, and somewhere, somewhere, There was a shutter loose,—it screeched! Swung in the wind,—and no wind blowing!— I was afraid, and turned to you, Put out my hand to you for comfort,— And you were gone! Cold, cold as dew, Under my hand the moonlight lay! Love, if you laugh I shall not care, But if I weep it will not matter,— Ah, it is good to feel you there!


by Louise Bogan | |

The Alchemist

 I burned my life, that I may find
A passion wholly of the mind,
Thought divorced from eye and bone
Ecstasy come to breath alone.
I broke my life, to seek relief From the flawed light of love and grief.
With mounting beat the utter fire Charred existence and desire.
It died low, ceased its sudden thresh.
I had found unmysterious flesh-- Not the mind's avid substance--still Passionate beyond the will.


by Louise Bogan | |

Man Alone

 It is yourself you seek
In a long rage,
Scanning through light and darkness
Mirrors, the page,

Where should reflected be
Those eyes and that thick hair,
That passionate look, that laughter.
You should appear Within the book, or doubled, Freed, in the silvered glass; Into all other bodies Yourself should pass.
The glass does not dissolve; Like walls the mirrors stand; The printed page gives back Words by another hand.
And your infatuate eye Meets not itself below; Strangers lie in your arms As I lie now.


by Louise Bogan | |

Roman Fountain

 Up from the bronze, I saw
Water without a flaw
Rush to its rest in air,
Reach to its rest, and fall.
Bronze of the blackest shade, An element man-made, Shaping upright the bare Clear gouts of water in air.
O, as with arm and hammer, Still it is good to strive To beat out the image whole, To echo the shout and stammer When full-gushed waters, alive, Strike on the fountain's bowl After the air of summer.


by Louise Bogan | |

Solitary Observation Brought Back From A Sojourn In Hell

 At midnight tears
Run in your ears.


by Louise Bogan | |

Sonnet

 To the River Otter

Dear native Brook! wild Streamlet of the West!
How many various-fated years have past,
What happy and what mournful hours, since last
I skimm'd the smooth thin stone along thy breast,
Numbering its light leaps! yet so deep imprest
Sink the sweet scenes of childhood, that mine eyes
I never shut amid the sunny ray,
But straight with all their tints thy waters rise,
Thy crossing plank, thy marge with willows grey,
And bedded sand that vein'd with various dyes
Gleam'd through thy bright transparence! On my way,
Visions of Childhood! oft have ye beguil'd
Lone manhood's cares, yet waking fondest sighs:
Ah! that once more I were a careless Child!


by Louise Bogan | |

A Tale

 This youth too long has heard the break 
Of waters in a land of change.
He goes to see what suns can make From soil more indurate and strange.
He cuts what holds his days together And shuts him in, as lock on lock: The arrowed vane announcing weather, The tripping racket of a clock; Seeking, I think, a light that waits Still as a lamp upon a shelf, -- A land with hills like rocky gates Where no sea leaps upon itself.
But he will find that nothing dares To be enduring, save where, south Of hidden deserts, torn fire glares On beauty with a rusted mouth, -- Where something dreadful and another Look quietly upon each other.


by Louise Bogan | |

Tears In Sleep

 All night the cocks crew, under a moon like day,
And I, in the cage of sleep, on a stranger's breast,
Shed tears, like a task not to be put away---
In the false light, false grief in my happy bed,
A labor of tears, set against joy's undoing.
I would not wake at your word, I had tears to say.
I clung to the bars of the dream and they were said, And pain's derisive hand had given me rest From the night giving off flames, and the dark renewing.


by Louise Bogan | |

Juans Song

 When beauty breaks and falls asunder
I feel no grief for it, but wonder.
When love, like a frail shell, lies broken, I keep no chip of it for token.
I never had a man for friend Who did not know that love must end.
I never had a girl for lover Who could discern when love was over.
What the wise doubt, the fool believes-- Who is it, then, that love deceives?


by Louise Bogan | |

Betrothed

 You have put your two hands upon me, and your mouth,
You have said my name as a prayer.
Here where trees are planted by the water I have watched your eyes, cleansed from regret, And your lips, closed over all that love cannot say, My mother remembers the agony of her womb And long years that seemed to promise more than this.
She says, "You do not love me, You do not want me, You will go away.
" In the country whereto I go I shall not see the face of my friend Nor her hair the color of sunburnt grasses; Together we shall not find The land on whose hills bends the new moon In air traversed of birds.
What have I thought of love? I have said, "It is beauty and sorrow.
" I have thought that it would bring me lost delights, and splendor As a wind out of old time .
.
.
But there is only the evening here, And the sound of willows Now and again dipping their long oval leaves in the water.


by Louise Bogan | |

Chanson Un Peu Naïve

 What body can be ploughed,
Sown, and broken yearly?
But she would not die, she vowed,
But she has, nearly.
Sing, heart sing; Call and carol clearly.
And, since she could not die, Care would be a feather, A film over the eye Of two that lie together.
Fly, song, fly, Break your little tether.
So from strength concealed She makes her pretty boast: Plain is a furrow healed And she may love you most.
Cry, song, cry, And hear your crying lost.


by Louise Bogan | |

Last Hill In A Vista

 Come, let us tell the weeds in ditches
How we are poor, who once had riches,
And lie out in the sparse and sodden
Pastures that the cows have trodden,
The while an autumn night seals down
The comforts of the wooden town.
Come, let us counsel some cold stranger How we sought safety, but loved danger.
So, with stiff walls about us, we Chose this more fragile boundary: Hills, where light poplars, the firm oak, Loosen into a little smoke.


by Louise Bogan | |

Medusa

 I had come to the house, in a cave of trees, 
Facing a sheer sky.
Everything moved, -- a bell hung ready to strike, Sun and reflection wheeled by.
When the bare eyes were before me And the hissing hair, Held up at a window, seen through a door.
The stiff bald eyes, the serpents on the forehead Formed in the air.
This is a dead scene forever now.
Nothing will ever stir.
The end will never brighten it more than this, Nor the rain blur.
The water will always fall, and will not fall, And the tipped bell make no sound.
The grass will always be growing for hay Deep on the ground.
And I shall stand here like a shadow Under the great balanced day, My eyes on the yellow dust, that was lifting in the wind, And does not drift away.


by Louise Bogan | |

Men Loved Wholly Beyond Wisdom

 Men loved wholly beyond wisdom
Have the staff without the banner.
Like a fire in a dry thicket Rising within women's eyes Is the love men must return.
Heart, so subtle now, and trembling, What a marvel to be wise.
, To love never in this manner! To be quiet in the fern Like a thing gone dead and still, Listening to the prisoned cricket Shake its terrible dissembling Music in the granite hill.