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Best Famous Raymond Carver Poems

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

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by Raymond Carver | |

The Current

 These fish have no eyes 
these silver fish that come to me in dreams, 
scattering their roe and milt 
in the pockets of my brain.
But there's one that comes-- heavy, scarred, silent like the rest, that simply holds against the current, closing its dark mouth against the current, closing and opening as it holds to the current.


by Raymond Carver | |

Happiness

 So early it's still almost dark out.
I'm near the window with coffee, and the usual early morning stuff that passes for thought.
When I see the boy and his friend walking up the road to deliver the newspaper.
They wear caps and sweaters, and one boy has a bag over his shoulder.
They are so happy they aren't saying anything, these boys.
I think if they could, they would take each other's arm.
It's early in the morning, and they are doing this thing together.
They come on, slowly.
The sky is taking on light, though the moon still hangs pale over the water.
Such beauty that for a minute death and ambition, even love, doesn't enter into this.
Happiness.
It comes on unexpectedly.
And goes beyond, really, any early morning talk about it.


by Raymond Carver | |

Drinking While Driving

 It's August and I have not 
Read a book in six months 
except something called The Retreat from Moscow
by Caulaincourt 
Nevertheless, I am happy 
Riding in a car with my brother 
and drinking from a pint of Old Crow.
We do not have any place in mind to go, we are just driving.
If I closed my eyes for a minute I would be lost, yet I could gladly lie down and sleep forever beside this road My brother nudges me.
Any minute now, something will happen.


by Raymond Carver | |

Late Fragment

 And did you get what
you wanted from this life, even so?
I did.
And what did you want? To call myself beloved, to feel myself beloved on the earth.


by Raymond Carver | |

Photograph of My Father in His Twenty-Second Year

 October.
Here in this dank, unfamiliar kitchen I study my father's embarrassed young man's face.
Sheepish grin, he holds in one hand a string of spiny yellow perch, in the other a bottle of Carlsbad Beer.
In jeans and denim shirt, he leans against the front fender of a 1934 Ford.
He would like to pose bluff and hearty for his posterity, Wear his old hat cocked over his ear.
All his life my father wanted to be bold.
But the eyes give him away, and the hands that limply offer the string of dead perch and the bottle of beer.
Father, I love you, yet how can I say thank you, I who can't hold my liquor either, and don't even know the places to fish?


by Raymond Carver | |

What The Doctor Said

 He said it doesn't look good
he said it looks bad in fact real bad
he said I counted thirty-two of them on one lung before
I quit counting them
I said I'm glad I wouldn't want to know
about any more being there than that
he said are you a religious man do you kneel down
in forest groves and let yourself ask for help
when you come to a waterfall
mist blowing against your face and arms
do you stop and ask for understanding at those moments
I said not yet but I intend to start today
he said I'm real sorry he said
I wish I had some other kind of news to give you
I said Amen and he said something else
I didn't catch and not knowing what else to do
and not wanting him to have to repeat it
and me to have to fully digest it
I just looked at him
for a minute and he looked back it was then
I jumped up and shook hands with this man who'd just given me
something no one else on earth had ever given me
I may have even thanked him habit being so strong


by Raymond Carver | |

An Afternoon

 As he writes, without looking at the sea,
he feels the tip of his pen begin to tremble.
The tide is going out across the shingle.
But it isn't that.
No, it's because at that moment she chooses to walk into the room without any clothes on.
Drowsy, not even sure where she is for a moment.
She waves the hair from her forehead.
Sits on the toilet with her eyes closed, head down.
Legs sprawled.
He sees her through the doorway.
Maybe she's remembering what happened that morning.
For after a time, she opens one eye and looks at him.
And sweetly smiles.


by Raymond Carver | |

Bobber

 On the Columbia River near Vantage, 
Washington, we fished for whitefish 
in the winter months; my dad, Swede- 
Mr.
Lindgren-and me.
They used belly-reels, pencil-length sinkers, red, yellow, or brown flies baited with maggots.
They wanted distance and went clear out there to the edge of the riffle.
I fished near shore with a quill bobber and a cane pole.
My dad kept his maggots alive and warm under his lower lip.
Mr.
Lindgren didn't drink.
I liked him better than my dad for a time.
He lets me steer his car, teased me about my name "Junior," and said one day I'd grow into a fine man, remember all this, and fish with my own son.
But my dad was right.
I mean he kept silent and looked into the river, worked his tongue, like a thought, behind the bait.


by Raymond Carver | |

The Best Time Of The Day

 Cool summer nights.
Windows open.
Lamps burning.
Fruit in the bowl.
And your head on my shoulder.
These the happiest moments in the day.
Next to the early morning hours, of course.
And the time just before lunch.
And the afternoon, and early evening hours.
But I do love these summer nights.
Even more, I think, than those other times.
The work finished for the day.
And no one who can reach us now.
Or ever.


by Raymond Carver | |

The Scratch

 I woke up with a spot of blood 
over my eye.
A scratch halfway across my forehead.
But I'm sleeping alone these days.
Why on earth would a man raise his hand against himself, even in sleep? It's this and similar questions I'm trying to answer this morning.
As I study my face in the window.


by Raymond Carver | |

Your Dog Dies

 it gets run over by a van.
you find it at the side of the road and bury it.
you feel bad about it.
you feel bad personally, but you feel bad for your daughter because it was her pet, and she loved it so.
she used to croon to it and let it sleep in her bed.
you write a poem about it.
you call it a poem for your daughter, about the dog getting run over by a van and how you looked after it, took it out into the woods and buried it deep, deep, and that poem turns out so good you're almost glad the little dog was run over, or else you'd never have written that good poem.
then you sit down to write a poem about writing a poem about the death of that dog, but while you're writing you hear a woman scream your name, your first name, both syllables, and your heart stops.
after a minute, you continue writing.
she screams again.
you wonder how long this can go on.


by Raymond Carver | |

The Cobweb

 A few minutes ago, I stepped onto the deck
of the house.
From there I could see and hear the water, and everything that's happened to me all these years.
It was hot and still.
The tide was out.
No birds sang.
As I leaned against the railing a cobweb touched my forehead.
It caught in my hair.
No one can blame me that I turned and went inside.
There was no wind.
The sea was dead calm.
I hung the cobweb from the lampshade.
Where I watch it shudder now and then when my breath touches it.
A fine thread.
Intricate.
Before long, before anyone realizes, I'll be gone from here.