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Best Famous Dance Poems

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

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by William Wordsworth | |

I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud

I wandered lonely as a cloud 
That floats on high o'er vales and hills, 
When all at once I saw a crowd, 
A host, of golden daffodils; 
Beside the lake, beneath the trees, 
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine And twinkle on the milky way, They stretched in never-ending line Along the margin of a bay: Ten thousand saw I at a glance, Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
The waves beside them danced; but they Out-did the sparkling waves in glee: A poet could not but be gay, In such a jocund company: I gazed - and gazed - but little thought What wealth the show to me had brought: For oft, when on my couch I lie In vacant or in pensive mood, They flash upon that inward eye Which is the bliss of solitude; And then my heart with pleasure fills, And dances with the daffodils.


by Conrad Aiken | |

The House Of Dust: Part 01: 08: The white fog creeps from the cold sea over the city

 The white fog creeps from the cold sea over the city,
Over the pale grey tumbled towers,—
And settles among the roofs, the pale grey walls.
Along damp sinuous streets it crawls, Curls like a dream among the motionless trees And seems to freeze.
The fog slips ghostlike into a thousand rooms, Whirls over sleeping faces, Spins in an atomy dance round misty street lamps; And blows in cloudy waves over open spaces .
.
.
And one from his high window, looking down, Peers at the cloud-white town, And thinks its island towers are like a dream .
.
.
It seems an enormous sleeper, within whose brain Laborious shadows revolve and break and gleam.


by William Stafford | |

Lit Instructor

 Day after day up there beating my wings
with all the softness truth requires
I feel them shrug whenever I pause:
they class my voice among tentative things,

And they credit fact, force, battering.
I dance my way toward the family of knowing, embracing stray error as a long-lost boy and bringing him home with my fluttering.
Every quick feather asserts a just claim; it bites like a saw into white pine.
I communicate right; but explain to the dean-- well, Right has a long and intricate name.
And the saying of it is a lonely thing.


by Siegfried Sassoon | |

In Me Past Present Future meet

 In me, past, present, future meet
To hold long chiding conference.
My lusts usurp the present tense And strangle Reason in his seat.
My loves leap through the future’s fence To dance with dream-enfranchised feet.
In me the cave-man clasps the seer, And garlanded Apollo goes Chanting to Abraham’s deaf ear.
In me the tiger sniffs the rose.
Look in my heart, kind friends, and tremble, Since there your elements assemble.


by Siegfried Sassoon | |

To Leonide Massine in ‘Cleopatra’

 O beauty doomed and perfect for an hour, 
Leaping along the verge of death and night, 
You show me dauntless Youth that went to fight 
Four long years past, discovering pride and power.
You die but in our dreams, who watch you fall Knowing that to-morrow you will dance again.
But not to ebbing music were they slain Who sleep in ruined graves, beyond recall; Who, following phantom-glory, friend and foe, Into the darkness that was War must go; Blind; banished from desire.
O mortal heart Be still; you have drained the cup; you have played your part.


by Delmore Schwartz | |

News Of The Gold World Of May

 News of the Gold World of May in Holland Michigan:
"Wooden shoes will clatter again
 on freshly scrubbed streets--"

The tulip will arise and reign again from awnings and
 windows
 of all colors and forms
 its vine, verve and valentine curves

 upon the city streets, the public grounds 
 and private lawns
 (wherever it is conceivable
 that a bulb might take root
 and the two lips, softly curved, come up 
 possessed by the skilled love and will of a ballerina.
) The citizens will dance in folk dances.
They will thump, they will pump, thudding and shoving elbow and thigh, bumping and laughing, like barrels and bells.
Vast fields of tulips in full bloom, the reproduction of a miniature Dutch village, part of a gigantic flower show.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Death King

 I hired a carpenter
to build my coffin
and last night I lay in it,
braced by a pillow,
sniffing the wood,
letting the old king
breathe on me,
thinking of my poor murdered body,
murdered by time,
waiting to turn stiff as a field marshal,
letting the silence dishonor me,
remembering that I'll never cough again.
Death will be the end of fear and the fear of dying, fear like a dog stuffed in my mouth, feal like dung stuffed up my nose, fear where water turns into steel, fear as my breast flies into the Disposall, fear as flies tremble in my ear, fear as the sun ignites in my lap, fear as night can't be shut off, and the dawn, my habitual dawn, is locked up forever.
Fear and a coffin to lie in like a dead potato.
Even then I will dance in my dire clothes, a crematory flight, blinding my hair and my fingers, wounding God with his blue face, his tyranny, his absolute kingdom, with my aphrodisiac.


by Anne Sexton | |

Raccoon

 Coon, why did you come to this dance
with a mask on? Why not the tin man
and his rainbow girl? Why not Racine,
his hair marcelled down to his chest?
Why not come as a stomach digesting
its worms? Why you little fellow
with your ears at attention and your
nose poking up like a microphone?
You whig emblem, you woman chaser,
who do you dance over the wide lawn tonight
clanging the garbage pail like great silver bells?


by Anne Sexton | |

Red Roses

 Tommy is three and when he's bad
his mother dances with him.
She puts on the record, "Red Roses for a Blue Lady" and throws him across the room.
Mind you, she never laid a hand on him.
He gets red roses in different places, the head, that time he was as sleepy as a river, the back, that time he was a broken scarecrow, the arm like a diamond had bitten it, the leg, twisted like a licorice stick, all the dance they did together, Blue Lady and Tommy.
You fell, she said, just remember you fell.
I fell, is all he told the doctors in the big hospital.
A nice lady came and asked him questions but because he didn't want to be sent away he said, I fell.
He never said anything else although he could talk fine.
He never told about the music or how she'd sing and shout holding him up and throwing him.
He pretends he is her ball.
He tries to fold up and bounce but he squashes like fruit.
For he loves Blue Lady and the spots of red roses he gives her


by Anne Sexton | |

Small Wire

 My faith
is a great weight
hung on a small wire,
as doth the spider
hang her baby on a thin web,
as doth the vine,
twiggy and wooden,
hold up grapes
like eyeballs,
as many angels
dance on the head of a pin.
God does not need too much wire to keep Him there, just a thin vein, with blood pushing back and forth in it, and some love.
As it has been said: Love and a cough cannot be concealed.
Even a small cough.
Even a small love.
So if you have only a thin wire, God does not mind.
He will enter your hands as easily as ten cents used to bring forth a Coke.


by Charles Sorley | |

Expectans Expectavi

 From morn to midnight, all day through,
 I laugh and play as others do,
 I sin and chatter, just the same
 As others with a different name.
And all year long upon the stage I dance and tumble and do rage So vehemently, I scarcely see The inner and eternal me.
I have a temple I do not Visit, a heart I have forgot, A self that I have never met, A secret shrine -- and yet, and yet This sanctuary of my soul Unwitting I keep white and whole, Unlatched and lit, if Thou should'st care To enter or to tarry there.
With parted lips and outstretched hands And listening ears Thy servant stands, Call Thou early, call Thou late, To Thy great service dedicate.


by Stanley Kunitz | |

An Old Cracked Tune

 My name is Solomon Levi,
the desert is my home,
my mother's breast was thorny,
and father I had none.
The sands whispered, Be separate, the stones taught me, Be hard.
I dance, for the joy of surviving, on the edge of the road.


by Stanley Kunitz | |

After The Last Dynasty

 Reading in Li Po
how "the peach blossom follows the water"
I keep thinking of you
because you were so much like
Chairman Mao,
naturally with the sex 
transposed
and the figure slighter.
Loving you was a kind of Chinese guerilla war.
Thanks to your lightfoot genius no Eighth Route Army kept its lines more fluid, traveled with less baggage so nibbled the advantage.
Even with your small bad heart you made a dance of departures.
In the cold spring rains when last you failed me I had nothing left to spend but a red crayon language on the character of the enemy to break appointments, to fight us not with his strength but with his weakness, to kill us not with his health but with his sickness.
Pet, spitfire, blue-eyed pony, here is a new note I want to pin on your door, though I am ten years late and you are nowhere: Tell me, are you stillmistress of the valley, what trophies drift downriver, why did you keep me waiting?


by Pablo Neruda | |

Ode To The Onion

 Onion,
luminous flask,
your beauty formed
petal by petal,
crystal scales expanded you
and in the secrecy of the dark earth
your belly grew round with dew.
Under the earth the miracle happened and when your clumsy green stem appeared, and your leaves were born like swords in the garden, the earth heaped up her power showing your naked transparency, and as the remote sea in lifting the breasts of Aphrodite duplicating the magnolia, so did the earth make you, onion clear as a planet and destined to shine, constant constellation, round rose of water, upon the table of the poor.
You make us cry without hurting us.
I have praised everything that exists, but to me, onion, you are more beautiful than a bird of dazzling feathers, heavenly globe, platinum goblet, unmoving dance of the snowy anemone and the fragrance of the earth lives in your crystalline nature.


by Alexander Pope | |

Sound And Sense

 True ease in writing comes from art, not chance,
As those move easiest who have learned to dance.
'Tis not enough no harshness gives offense, The sound must seem an echo to the sense: Soft is the strain when Zephyr gently blows, And the smooth stream in smoother numbers flows; But when loud surges lash the sounding shore, The hoarse, rough verse should like the torrent roar; When Ajax strives some rock's vast weight to throw, The line too labors, and the words move slow; Not so, when swift Camilla scours the plain, Flies o'er the unbending corn, and skims along the main.
Hear how Timotheus' varied lays surprise, And bid alternate passions fall and rise!


by Alexander Pushkin | |

Imitation

 I saw the Death, and she was seating
By quiet entrance at my own home,
I saw the doors were opened in my tomb,
And there, and there my hope was a-flitting
I'll die, and traces of my past
In days of future will be never sighted,
Look of my eyes will never be delighted
By dear look, in my existence last.
Farewell the somber world, where, precipice above, My gloomy road was a-streaming, Where life for me was never cheering, Where I was loving, having not to love! The dazzling heavens' azure curtain, Beloved hills, the brook's enchanting dance, You, mourn -- the inspiration's chance, You, peaceful shades of wilderness, uncertain, And all -- farewell, farewell at once.


by Alexander Pushkin | |

Bound for your distant home

 Bound for your distant home
you were leaving alien lands.
In an hour as sad as I’ve known I wept over your hands.
My hands were numb and cold, still trying to restrain you, whom my hurt told never to end this pain.
But you snatched your lips away from our bitterest kiss.
You invoked another place than the dismal exile of this.
You said, ‘When we meet again, in the shadow of olive-trees, we shall kiss, in a love without pain, under cloudless infinities.
’ But there, alas, where the sky shines with blue radiance, where olive-tree shadows lie on the waters glittering dance, your beauty, your suffering, are lost in eternity.
But the sweet kiss of our meeting .
.
.
I wait for it: you owe it me .
.
.


by Kathleen Raine | |

Shells

 Reaching down arm-deep into bright water 
I gathered on white sand under waves 
Shells, drifted up on beaches where I alone 
Inhabit a finite world of years and days.
I reached my arm down a myriad years To gather treasure from the yester-milliennial sea-floor, Held in my fingers forms shaped on the day of creation.
Building their beauty in three dimensions Over which the world recedes away from us, And in the fourth, that takes away ourselves From moment to moment and from year to year From first to last they remain in their continuous present.
The helix revolves like a timeless thought, Instantaneous from apex to rim Like a dance whose figure is limpet or murex, cowrie or golden winkle.
They sleep on the ocean floor like humming-tops Whose music is the mother-of-pearl octave of the rainbow, Harmonious shells that whisper forever in our ears, The world that you inhabit has not yet been created.


by Kathleen Raine | |

Transit of the Gods

 Strange that the self’s continuum should outlast 
The Virgin, Aphrodite, and the Mourning Mother, 
All loves and griefs, successive deities 
That hold their kingdom in the human breast.
Abandoned by the gods, woman with an ageing body That half remembers the Annunciation The passion and the travail and the grief That wore the mask of my humanity, I marvel at the soul’s indifference.
For in her theatre the play is done, The tears are shed; the actors, the immortals In their ceaseless manifestation, elsewhere gone, And I who have been Virgin and Aphrodite, The mourning Isis and the queen of corn Wait for the last mummer, dread Persephone To dance my dust at last into the tomb.


by Kathleen Raine | |

Vegetation

 O never harm the dreaming world, 
the world of green, the world of leaves, 
but let its million palms unfold 
the adoration of the trees.
It is a love in darkness wrought obedient to the unseen sun, longer than memory, a thought deeper than the graves of time.
The turning spindles of the cells weave a slow forest over space, the dance of love, creation, out of time moves not a leaf, and out of summer, not a shade.