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Best Famous Sophocles Poems

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

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See also: Best Member Poems

by Matthew Arnold | |

Dover Beach

The sea is calm to-night.
The tide is full, the moon lies fair Upon the straits; on the French coast the light Gleams and is gone; the cliffs of England stand, Glimmering and vast, out in the tranquil bay.
Come to the window, sweet is the night-air! Only, from the long line of spray Where the sea meets the moon-blanch'd land, Listen! you hear the grating roar Of pebbles which the waves draw back, and fling, At their return, up the high strand, Begin, and cease, and then again begin, With tremulous cadence slow, and bring The eternal note of sadness in.
Sophocles long ago Heard it on the {AE}gean, and it brought Into his mind the turbid ebb and flow Of human misery; we Find also in the sound a thought, Hearing it by this distant northern sea.
The Sea of Faith Was once, too, at the full, and round earth's shore Lay like the folds of a bright girdle furl'd.
But now I only hear Its melancholy, long, withdrawing roar, Retreating, to the breath Of the night-wind, down the vast edges drear And naked shingles of the world.
Ah, love, let us be true To one another! for the world, which seems To lie before us like a land of dreams, So various, so beautiful, so new, Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light, Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain; And we are here as on a darkling plain Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight, Where ignorant armies clash by night.


by Anthony Hecht | |

The Dover Bitch: A Criticism Of Life

 So there stood Matthew Arnold and this girl
With the cliffs of England crumbling away behind them,
And he said to her, "Try to be true to me,
And I'll do the same for you, for things are bad
All over, etc.
, etc.
" Well now, I knew this girl.
It's true she had read Sophocles in a fairly good translation And caught that bitter allusion to the sea, But all the time he was talking she had in mind the notion of what his whiskers would feel like On the back of her neck.
She told me later on That after a while she got to looking out At the lights across the channel, and really felt sad, Thinking of all the wine and enormous beds And blandishments in French and the perfumes.
And then she got really angry.
To have been brought All the way down from London, and then be addressed As sort of a mournful cosmic last resort Is really tough on a girl, and she was pretty.
Anyway, she watched him pace the room and finger his watch-chain and seem to sweat a bit, And then she said one or two unprintable things.
But you mustn't judge her by that.
What I mean to say is, She's really all right.
I still see her once in a while And she always treats me right.
We have a drink And I give her a good time, and perhaps it's a year Before I see her again, but there she is, Running to fat, but dependable as they come, And sometimes I bring her a bottle of Nuit d'Amour.
[Ed.
note: See Matthew Arnold's poem "Dover Beach"]


by Emily Dickinson | |

A precious -- mouldering pleasure -- tis

 A precious -- mouldering pleasure -- 'tis --
To meet an Antique Book --
In just the Dress his Century wore --
A privilege -- I think --

His venerable Hand to take --
And warming in our own --
A passage back -- or two -- to make --
To Times when he -- was young --

His quaint opinions -- to inspect --
His thought to ascertain
On Themes concern our mutual mind --
The Literature of Man --

What interested Scholars -- most --
What Competitions ran --
When Plato -- was a Certainty --
And Sophocles -- a Man --

When Sappho -- was a living Girl --
And Beatrice wore
The Gown that Dante -- deified --
Facts Centuries before

He traverses -- familiar --
As One should come to Town --
And tell you all your Dreams -- were true --
He lived -- where Dreams were born --

His presence is Enchantment --
You beg him not to go --
Old Volume shake their Vellum Heads
And tantalize -- just so --


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