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Best Famous Autumn Poems

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

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See also: Best Member Poems

by Alfred Lord Tennyson | |

Tears Idle Tears

  Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean,
Tears from the depth of some divine despair
Rise in the heart, and gather to the eyes,
In looking on the happy Autumn-fields,
And thinking of the days that are no more.
Fresh as the first beam glittering on a sail, That brings our friends up from the underworld, Sad as the last which reddens over one That sinks with all we love below the verge; So sad, so fresh, the days that are no more.
Ah, sad and strange as in dark summer dawns The earliest pipe of half-awakened birds To dying ears, when unto dying eyes The casement slowly grows a glimmering square; So sad, so strange, the days that are no more.
Dear as remembered kisses after death, And sweet as those by hopeless fancy feigned On lips that are for others; deep as love, Deep as first love, and wild with all regret; O Death in Life, the days that are no more!


by Emily Dickinson | |

It was not death for I stood up

It was not death, for I stood up,
And all the dead lie down;
It was not night, for all the bells
Put out their tongues, for noon.
It was not frost, for on my flesh I felt siroccos crawl,-- Nor fire, for just my marble feet Could keep a chancel cool.
And yet it tasted like them all; The figures I have seen Set orderly, for burial, Reminded me of mine, As if my life were shaven And fitted to a frame, And could not breathe without a key; And 't was like midnight, some, When everything that ticked has stopped, And space stares, all around, Or grisly frosts, first autumn morns, Repeal the beating ground.
But most like chaos,--stopless, cool,-- Without a chance or spar,-- Or even a report of land To justify despair.


by John Keats | |

To Autumn

SEASON of mists and mellow fruitfulness! 
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun; 
Conspiring with him how to load and bless 
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run; 
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees 5 
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core; 
To swell the gourd and plump the hazel shells 
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more  
And still more later flowers for the bees  
Until they think warm days will never cease 10 
For Summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store? Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find Thee sitting careless on a granary floor Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind; 15 Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep Drowsed with the fume of poppies while thy hook Spares the next swath and all its twin¨¨d flowers; And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep Steady thy laden head across a brook; 20 Or by a cider-press with patient look Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay where are they? Think not of them thou hast thy music too ¡ª While barr¨¨d clouds bloom the soft-dying day 25 And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue; Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn Among the river sallows borne aloft Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies; And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn; 30 Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft; And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.


More great poems below...

by Edward Estlin (E E) Cummings | |

Anyone Lived In A Pretty How Town

anyone lived in a pretty how town
(with up so floating many bells down)
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn't he danced his did

Women and men(both little and samll)
cared for anyone not at all
they sowed their isn't they reaped their
same
sun moon stars rain

children guessed(but only a few
and down they forgot as up they grew
autumn winter spring summer)
that noone loved him more by more

when by now and tree by leaf
she laughed his joy she cried his grief
bird by snow and stir by still
anyone's any was all to her

someones married their everyones
laughed their cryings and did their dance
(sleep wake hope and then)they
said their nevers they slept their dream

stars rain sun moon
(and only the snow can begin to explain
how children are apt to forget to remember
with up so floating many bells down)

one day anyone died i guess
(and noone stooped to kiss his face)
busy folk buried them side by side
little by little and was by was

all by all and deep by deep
and more by moe they dream their sleep
noone and anyone earth by april

wish by spirit and if by yes

Women and men(both dong and ding)
summer sutumn winter spring
reaped their sowing and went their came
sun moon stars rain


by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow | |

The Warden of the Cinque Ports

A MIST was driving down the British Channel, 
The day was just begun, 
And through the window-panes, on floor and panel, 
Streamed the red autumn sun.
It glanced on flowing flag and rippling pennon, 5 And the white sails of ships; And, from the frowning rampart, the black cannon Hailed it with feverish lips.
Sandwich and Romney, Hastings, Hithe, and Dover, Were all alert that day, 10 To see the French war-steamers speeding over, When the fog cleared away.
Sullen and silent, and like couchant lions, Their cannon, through the night, Holding their breath, had watched, in grim defiance, 15 The sea-coast opposite.
And now they roared at drum-beat from their stations, On every citadel; Each answering each, with morning salutations, That all was well.
20 And down the coast, all taking up the burden, Replied the distant forts, As if to summon from his sleep the Warden And Lord of the Cinque Ports.
Him shall no sunshine from the fields of azure, 25 No drum-beat from the wall, No morning gun from the black fort's embrasure, Awaken with its call! No more, surveying with an eye impartial The long line of the coast, 30 Shall the gaunt figure of the old Field Marshal Be seen upon his post! For in the night, unseen, a single warrior, In sombre harness mailed, Dreaded of man, and surnamed the Destroyer, 35 The rampart wall had scaled.
He passed into the chamber of the sleeper, The dark and silent room, And as he entered, darker grew, and deeper, The silence and the gloom.
40 He did not pause to parley or dissemble, But smote the Warden hoar; Ah! what a blow! that made all England tremble And groan from shore to shore.
Meanwhile, without, the surly cannon waited, 45 The sun rose bright o'erhead; Nothing in Nature's aspect intimated That a great man was dead.


by Wallace Stevens | |

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird

I 
Among twenty snowy mountains, 
The only moving thing 
Was the eye of the blackbird.
II I was of three minds, Like a tree In which there are three blackbirds.
III The blackbird whirled in the autumn winds.
It was a small part of the pantomime.
IV A man and a woman Are one.
A man and a woman and a blackbird Are one.
V I do not know which to prefer, The beauty of inflections Or the beauty of innuendoes, The blackbird whistling Or just after.
VI Icicles filled the long window With barbaric glass.
The shadow of the blackbird Crossed it, to and fro.
The mood Traced in the shadow An indecipherable cause.
VII O thin men of Haddam, Why do you imagine golden birds? Do you not see how the blackbird Walks around the feet Of the women about you? VIII I know noble accents And lucid, inescapable rhythms; But I know, too, That the blackbird is involved In what I know.
IX When the blackbird flew out of sight, It marked the edge Of one of many circles.
X At the sight of blackbirds Flying in a green light, Even the bawds of euphony Would cry out sharply.
XI He rode over Connecticut In a glass coach.
Once, a fear pierced him, In that he mistook The shadow of his equipage For blackbirds.
XII The river is moving.
The blackbird must be flying.
XIII It was evening all afternoon.
It was snowing And it was going to snow.
The blackbird sat In the cedar-limbs.


by Percy Bysshe Shelley | |

Remorse

AWAY! the moor is dark beneath the moon  
Rapid clouds have drunk the last pale beam of even: 
Away! the gathering winds will call the darkness soon  
And profoundest midnight shroud the serene lights of heaven.
Pause not! the time is past! Every voice cries 'Away!' 5 Tempt not with one last tear thy friend's ungentle mood: Thy lover's eye so glazed and cold dares not entreat thy stay: Duty and dereliction guide thee back to solitude.
Away away! to thy sad and silent home; Pour bitter tears on its desolated hearth; 10 Watch the dim shades as like ghosts they go and come And complicate strange webs of melancholy mirth.
The leaves of wasted autumn woods shall float around thine head The blooms of dewy Spring shall gleam beneath thy feet: But thy soul or this world must fade in the frost that binds the dead 15 Ere midnight's frown and morning's smile ere thou and peace may meet.
The cloud shadows of midnight possess their own repose For the weary winds are silent or the moon is in the deep; Some respite to its turbulence unresting ocean knows; Whatever moves or toils or grieves hath its appointed sleep.
20 Thou in the grave shalt rest:¡ªyet till the phantoms flee Which that house and heath and garden made dear to thee erewhile Thy remembrance and repentance and deep musings are not free From the music of two voices and the light of one sweet smile.


by Wang Wei | |

A MESSAGE FROM MY LODGE AT WANGCHUAN TO PEI DI

The mountains are cold and blue now 
And the autumn waters have run all day.
By my thatch door, leaning on my staff, I listen to cicadas in the evening wind.
Sunset lingers at the ferry, Supper-smoke floats up from the houses.
.
.
.
Oh, when shall I pledge the great Hermit again And sing a wild poem at Five Willows?


by Edward Estlin (E E) Cummings | |

enter no(silence is the blood whose flesh

enter no(silence is the blood whose flesh
is singing)silence:but unsinging.
In spectral such hugest how hush,one dead leaf stirring makes a crash -far away(as far as alive)lies april;and i breathe-move-and-seem some perpetually roaming whylessness- autumn has gone:will winter never come? o come,terrible anonymity;enfold phantom me with the murdering minus of cold -open this ghost with millionary knives of wind- scatter his nothing all over what angry skies and gently (very whiteness:absolute peace, never imaginable mystery) descend


by Siegfried Sassoon | |

October

ACROSS the land a faint blue veil of mist
Seems hung; the woods wear yet arrayment sober
Till frost shall make them flame; silent and whist
The drooping cherry orchards of October
Like mournful pennons hang their shrivelling leaves 5
Russet and orange: all things now decay;
Long since ye garnered in your autumn sheaves 
And sad the robins pipe at set of day.
Now do ye dream of Spring when greening shaws Confer with the shrewd breezes and of slopes 10 Flower-kirtled and of April virgin guest; Days that ye love despite their windy flaws Since they are woven with all joys and hopes Whereof ye nevermore shall be possessed.


by Percy Bysshe Shelley | |

Invocation

RARELY rarely comest thou  
Spirit of Delight! 
Wherefore hast thou left me now 
Many a day and night? 
Many a weary night and day 5 
'Tis since thou art fled away.
How shall ever one like me Win thee back again? With the joyous and the free Thou wilt scoff at pain.
10 Spirit false! thou hast forgot All but those who need thee not.
As a lizard with the shade Of a trembling leaf Thou with sorrow art dismay'd; 15 Even the sighs of grief Reproach thee that thou art not near And reproach thou wilt not hear.
Let me set my mournful ditty To a merry measure; 20 Thou wilt never come for pity Thou wilt come for pleasure: Pity then will cut away Those cruel wings and thou wilt stay.
I love all that thou lovest 25 Spirit of Delight! The fresh earth in new leaves drest And the starry night; Autumn evening and the morn When the golden mists are born.
30 I love snow and all the forms Of the radiant frost; I love waves and winds and storms Everything almost Which is Nature's and may be 35 Untainted by man's misery.
I love tranquil solitude And such society As is quiet wise and good; Between thee and me 40 What diff'rence? but thou dost possess The things I seek not love them less.
I love Love¡ªthough he has wings And like light can flee But above all other things 45 Spirit I love thee¡ª Thou art love and life! O come! Make once more my heart thy home!


by William Cullen Bryant | |

The Death of the Flowers

THE MELANCHOLY days have come the saddest of the year  
Of wailing winds and naked woods and meadows brown and sere; 
Heaped in the hollows of the grove the autumn leaves lie dead; 
They rustle to the eddying gust and to the rabbit's tread; 
The robin and the wren are flown and from the shrubs the jay 5 
And from the wood-top calls the crow through all the gloomy day.
Where are the flowers the fair young flowers that lately sprang and stood In brighter light and softer airs a beauteous sisterhood? Alas! they all are in their graves the gentle race of flowers Are lying in their lowly beds with the fair and good of ours.
10 The rain is falling where they lie but the cold November rain Calls not from out the gloomy earth the lovely ones again.
The wind-flower and the violet they perished long ago And the brier-rose and the orchis died amid the summer glow; But on the hill the goldenrod and the aster in the wood 15 And the blue sunflower by the brook in autumn beauty stood Till fell the frost from the clear cold heaven as falls the plague on men And the brightness of their smile was gone from upland glade and glen.
And now when comes the calm mild day as still such days will come To call the squirrel and the bee from out their winter home; 20 When the sound of dropping nuts is heard though all the trees are still And twinkle in the smoky light the waters of the rill The south wind searches for the flowers whose fragrance late he bore And sighs to find them in the wood and by the stream no more.
And then I think of one who in her youthful beauty died 25 The fair meek blossom that grew up and faded by my side.
In the cold moist earth we laid her when the forests cast the leaf And we wept that one so lovely should have a life so brief: Yet not unmeet it was that one like that young friend of ours So gentle and so beautiful should perish with the flowers.
30


by William Cullen Bryant | |

The Crowded Street

LET me move slowly through the street  
Filled with an ever-shifting train  
Amid the sound of steps that beat 
The murmuring walks like autumn rain.
How fast the flitting figures come! 5 The mild the fierce the stony face; Some bright with thoughtless smiles and some Where secret tears have left their trace.
They pass¡ªto toil to strife to rest; To halls in which the feast is spread; 10 To chambers where the funeral guest In silence sits beside the dead.
And some to happy homes repair Where children pressing cheek to cheek With mute caresses shall declare 15 The tenderness they cannot speak.
And some who walk in calmness here Shall shudder as they reach the door Where one who made their dwelling dear Its flower its light is seen no more.
20 Youth with pale cheek and slender frame And dreams of greatness in thine eye! Go'st thou to build an early name Or early in the task to die? Keen son of trade with eager brow! 25 Who is now fluttering in thy snare? Thy golden fortunes tower they now Or melt the glittering spires in air? Who of this crowd to-night shall tread The dance till daylight gleam again? 30 Who sorrow o'er the untimely dead? Who writhe in throes of mortal pain? Some famine-struck shall think how long The cold dark hours how slow the light; And some who flaunt amid the throng 35 Shall hide in dens of shame to-night.
Each where his tasks or pleasures call They pass and heed each other not.
There is who heeds who holds them all In His large love and boundless thought.
40 These struggling tides of life that seem In wayward aimless course to tend Are eddies of the mighty stream That rolls to its appointed end.


by Sara Teasdale | |

Sleepless

 If I could have your arms tonight-
But half the world and the broken sea
Lie between you and me.
The autumn rain reverberates in the courtyard, Beating all night against the barren stone, The sound of useless rain in the desolate courtyard Makes me more alone.
If you were here, if you were only here- My blood cries out to you all night in vain As sleepless as the rain.


by | |

Tenchi Tenno

Tenchi Tenno

Coarse the rush-mat roof
Sheltering the harvest-hut
Of the autumn rice-field;--
And my sleeves are growing wet
With the moisture dripping through.


by | |

Sarumaru Tayu

In the mountain depths,
Treading through the crimson leaves,
Cries the wandering stag.
When I hear the lonely cry, Sad,--how sad--the autumn is!


by Anonymous | |

THE LESSON OF THE LEAVES.

How do the leaves grow,
In spring, upon their stems?
Oh! the sap swells up with a drop for all,
And that is life to them.
What do the leaves do
Through the long summer hours,
They make a home for the wandering birds,
And shelter the wild flowers.
How do the leaves fade
Beneath the autumn blast?
Oh! they fairer grow before they die,
Their brightest is their last.
We, too, are like leaves,
O children! weak and small;
God knows each leaf of the forest shade:
He knows us, each and all.
Never a leaf falls
Until its part is done;
God gives us grace, like sap, and then
Some work to every one.
We, too, must grow old,
Beneath the autumn sky;
But lovelier and brighter our lives may grow,
Like leaves before they die.
[Pg 017]
Brighter with kind deeds,
With love to others given;
Till the leaf falls off from the autumn tree,
And the spirit is in heaven.


by T S (Thomas Stearns) Eliot | |

La Figlia che Piange

 O quam te memorem virgo.
.
.
STAND on the highest pavement of the stair— Lean on a garden urn— Weave, weave the sunlight in your hair— Clasp your flowers to you with a pained surprise— Fling them to the ground and turn With a fugitive resentment in your eyes: But weave, weave the sunlight in your hair.
So I would have had him leave, So I would have had her stand and grieve, So he would have left As the soul leaves the body torn and bruised, As the mind deserts the body it has used.
I should find Some way incomparably light and deft, Some way we both should understand, Simple and faithless as a smile and shake of the hand.
She turned away, but with the autumn weather Compelled my imagination many days, Many days and many hours: Her hair over her arms and her arms full of flowers.
And I wonder how they should have been together! I should have lost a gesture and a pose.
Sometimes these cogitations still amaze The troubled midnight and the noon’s repose.


by William Cullen Bryant | |

To the Fringed Gentian

 Thou blossom bright with autumn dew, 
And colored with the heaven's own blue, 
That openest when the quiet light 
Succeeds the keen and frosty night.
Thou comest not when violets lean O'er wandering brooks and springs unseen, Or columbines, in purple dressed, Nod o'er the ground-bird's hidden nest.
Thou waitest late and com'st alone, When woods are bare and birds are flown, And frosts and shortening days portend The aged year is near his end.
Then doth thy sweet and quiet eye Look through its fringes to the sky, Blue--blue--as if that sky let fall A flower from its cerulean wall.
I would that thus, when I shall see The hour of death draw near to me, Hope, blossoming within my heart, May look to heaven as I depart.


by Robert Seymour Bridges | |

In autumn moonlight when the white air wan

 In autumn moonlight, when the white air wan 
Is fragrant in the wake of summer hence, 
'Tis sweet to sit entranced, and muse thereon 
In melancholy and godlike indolence: 
When the proud spirit, lull'd by mortal prime 
To fond pretence of immortality, 
Vieweth all moments from the birth of time, 
All things whate'er have been or yet shall be.
And like the garden, where the year is spent, The ruin of old life is full of yearning, Mingling poetic rapture of lament With flowers and sunshine of spring's sure returning; Only in visions of the white air wan By godlike fancy seized and dwelt upon.


by W S Merwin | |

The Source

 The sleep that flits on baby's eyes-does anybody know from where
it comes? Yes, there is a rumour that it has its dwelling where,
in the fairy village among shadows of the forest dimly lit with
glow-worms, there hang two shy buds of enchantment.
From there it comes to kiss baby's eyes.
The smile that flickers on baby's lips when he sleeps-does anybody know where it was born? Yes, there is a rumour that a young pale beam of a crescent moon touched the edge of a vanishing autumn cloud, and there the smile was first born in the dream of a dew washed morning-the smile that flickers on baby's lips when he sleeps.
The sweet, soft freshness hat blooms on baby's limbs-does anybody know where it was hidden so long? Yes, when the mother was a young girl it lay pervading her heart in tender and silent mystery of love-the sweet, soft freshness that has bloomed on baby's limbs.


by John Greenleaf Whittier | |

Disarmament

 "Put up the sword!" The voice of Christ once more
Speaks, in the pauses of the cannon's roar,
O'er fields of corn by fiery sickles reaped
And left dry ashes; over trenches heaped
With nameless dead; o'er cities starving slow
Under a rain of fire; through wards of woe
Down which a groaning diapason runs
From tortured brothers, husbands, lovers, sons
Of desolate women in their far-off homes
Waiting to hear the step that never comes!
O men and brothers! let that voice be heard.
War fails, try peace; put up the useless sword! Fear not the end.
There is a story told In Eastern tents, when autumn nights grow cold, And round the fire the Mongol shepherds sit With grave responses listening unto it: Once, on the errands of his mercy bent, Buddha, the holy and benevolent, Met a fell monster, huge and fierce of look, Whose awful voice the hills and forests shook, "O son of peace!" the giant cried, "thy fate Is sealed at last, and love shall yield to hate.
" The unarmed Buddha looking, with no trace Of fear and anger, in the monster's face, In pity said, "Poor fiend, even thee I love.
" Lo! as he spake the sky-tall terror sank To hand-breadth size; the huge abhorrence shrank Into the form and fashion of a dove And where the thunder of its rage was heard, Circling above him sweetly sang the bird: "Hate hath no harm for love," so ran the song, "And peace unweaponed conquers every wrong!"


by William Lisle Bowles | |

To a Friend

 Go, then, and join the murmuring city's throng! 
Me thou dost leave to solitude and tears; 
To busy phantasies, and boding fears, 
Lest ill betide thee; but 't will not be long 
Ere the hard season shall be past; till then 
Live happy; sometimes the forsaken shade 
Remembering, and these trees now left to fade; 
Nor, mid the busy scenes and hum of men, 
Wilt thou my cares forget: in heaviness 
To me the hours shall roll, weary and slow, 
Till mournful autumn past, and all the snow 
Of winter pale, the glad hour I shall bless 
That shall restore thee from the crowd again, 
To the green hamlet on the peaceful plain.


by Oliver Wendell Holmes | |

Under the Violets

 HER hands are cold; her face is white;
No more her pulses come and go;
Her eyes are shut to life and light;--
Fold the white vesture, snow on snow,
And lay her where the violets blow.
But not beneath a graven stone, To plead for tears with alien eyes; A slender cross of wood alone Shall say, that here a maiden lies In peace beneath the peaceful skies.
And gray old trees of hugest limb Shall wheel their circling shadows round To make the scorching sunlight dim That drinks the greenness from the ground, And drop their dead leaves on her mound.
When o'er their boughs the squirrels run, And through their leaves the robins call, And, ripening in the autumn sun, The acorns and the chestnuts fall, Doubt not that she will heed them all.
For her the morning choir shall sing Its matins from the branches high, And every minstrel-voice of Spring, That trills beneath the April sky, Shall greet her with its earliest cry.
When, turning round their dial-track, Eastward the lengthening shadows pass, Her little mourners, clad in black, The crickets, sliding through the grass, Shall pipe for her an evening mass.
At last the rootlets of the trees Shall find the prison where she lies, And bear the buried dust they seize In leaves and blossoms to the skies.
So may the soul that warmed it rise! If any, born of kindlier blood, Should ask, What maiden lies below? Say only this: A tender bud, That tried to blossom in the snow, Lies withered where the violets blow.


by Paul Laurence Dunbar | |

Merry Autumn

 It's all a farce,—these tales they tell 
 About the breezes sighing, 
And moans astir o'er field and dell, 
 Because the year is dying.
Such principles are most absurd,— I care not who first taught 'em; There's nothing known to beast or bird To make a solemn autumn.
In solemn times, when grief holds sway With countenance distressing, You'll note the more of black and gray Will then be used in dressing.
Now purple tints are all around; The sky is blue and mellow; And e'en the grasses turn the ground From modest green to yellow.
The seed burs all with laughter crack On featherweed and jimson; And leaves that should be dressed in black Are all decked out in crimson.
A butterfly goes winging by; A singing bird comes after; And Nature, all from earth to sky, Is bubbling o'er with laughter.
The ripples wimple on the rills, Like sparkling little lasses; The sunlight runs along the hills, And laughs among the grasses.
The earth is just so full of fun It really can't contain it; And streams of mirth so freely run The heavens seem to rain it.
Don't talk to me of solemn days In autumn's time of splendor, Because the sun shows fewer rays, And these grow slant and slender.
Why, it's the climax of the year,— The highest time of living!— Till naturally its bursting cheer Just melts into thanksgiving.