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Best Famous Farewell Poems

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

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by Alfred Lord Tennyson | |

Crossing the Bar

Sunset and evening star, 
And one clear call for me! 
And may there be no moaning of the bar, 
When I put out to sea, 

But such a tide as moving seems asleep, 
Too full for sound and foam, 
When that which drew from out the boundless deep 
Turns again home.
Twilight and evening bell, And after that the dark! And may there be no sadness of farewell, When I embark; For though from out our bourne of Time and Place The flood may bear me far, I hope to see my Pilot face to face When I have crossed the bar.


by John Dryden | |

To the Memory of Mr. Oldham

Farewell, too little, and too lately known,
Whom I began to think and call my own:
For sure our souls were near allied, and thine
Cast in the same poetic mold with mine.
One common note on either lyre did strike, And knaves and fools we both abhorred alike.
To the same goal did both our studies drive; The last set out the soonest did arrive.
Thus Nisus fell upon the slippery place, While his young friend performed and won the race.
O early ripe! to thy abundant store What could advancing age have added more? It might (what nature never gives the young) Have taught the numbers of thy native tongue.
But satire needs not those, and wit will shine Through the harsh cadence of a rugged line: A noble error, and but seldom made, When poets are by too much force betrayed.
Thy generous fruits, though gathered ere their prime, Still showed a quickness, and maturing time But mellows what we write to the dull sweets of rhyme.
Once more, hail and farewell; farewell, thou young, But ah too short, Marcellus of our tongue; Thy brows with ivy, and with laurels bound; But fate and gloomy night encompass thee around.


by Sir Walter Raleigh | |

A Farewell to False Love

Farewell false love, the oracle of lies, 
A mortal foe and enemy to rest, 
An envious boy, from whom all cares arise, 
A bastard vile, a beast with rage possessed, 
A way of error, a temple full of treason, 
In all effects contrary unto reason.
A poisoned serpent covered all with flowers, Mother of sighs, and murderer of repose, A sea of sorrows whence are drawn such showers As moisture lend to every grief that grows; A school of guile, a net of deep deceit, A gilded hook that holds a poisoned bait.
A fortress foiled, which reason did defend, A siren song, a fever of the mind, A maze wherein affection finds no end, A raging cloud that runs before the wind, A substance like the shadow of the sun, A goal of grief for which the wisest run.
A quenchless fire, a nurse of trembling fear, A path that leads to peril and mishap, A true retreat of sorrow and despair, An idle boy that sleeps in pleasure's lap, A deep mistrust of that which certain seems, A hope of that which reason doubtful deems.
Sith* then thy trains my younger years betrayed, [since] And for my faith ingratitude I find; And sith repentance hath my wrongs bewrayed*, [revealed] Whose course was ever contrary to kind*: [nature] False love, desire, and beauty frail, adieu.
Dead is the root whence all these fancies grew.


More great poems below...

by William Blake | |

Night

THE sun descending in the west  
The evening star does shine; 
The birds are silent in their nest.
And I must seek for mine.
The moon like a flower 5 In heaven's high bower With silent delight Sits and smiles on the night.
Farewell green fields and happy grove Where flocks have took delight: 10 Where lambs have nibbled silent move The feet of angels bright; Unseen they pour blessing And joy without ceasing On each bud and blossom 15 And each sleeping bosom.
They look in every thoughtless nest Where birds are cover'd warm; They visit caves of every beast To keep them all from harm: 20 If they see any weeping That should have been sleeping They pour sleep on their head And sit down by their bed.
When wolves and tigers howl for prey 25 They pitying stand and weep Seeking to drive their thirst away And keep them from the sheep.
But if they rush dreadful The angels most heedful 30 Receive each mild spirit New worlds to inherit.
And there the lion's ruddy eyes Shall flow with tears of gold: And pitying the tender cries 35 And walking round the fold: Saying 'Wrath by His meekness And by His health sickness Are driven away From our immortal day.
40 'And now beside thee bleating lamb I can lie down and sleep Or think on Him who bore thy name Graze after thee and weep.
For wash'd in life's river 45 My bright mane for ever Shall shine like the gold As I guard o'er the fold.
'


by Wang Wei | |

TO QIWU QIAN BOUND HOME AFTER FAILING IN AN EXAMINATION

In a happy reign there should be no hermits; 
The wise and able should consult together.
.
.
.
So you, a man of the eastern mountains, Gave up your life of picking herbs And came all the way to the Gate of Gold -- But you found your devotion unavailing.
.
.
.
To spend the Day of No Fire on one of the southern rivers, You have mended your spring clothes here in these northern cities.
I pour you the farewell wine as you set out from the capital -- Soon I shall be left behind here by my bosomfriend.
In your sail-boat of sweet cinnamon-wood You will float again toward your own thatch door, Led along by distant trees To a sunset shining on a far-away town.
.
.
.
What though your purpose happened to fail, Doubt not that some of us can hear high music.


by Siegfried Sassoon | |

Morning Express

ALONG the wind-swept platform pinched and white 
The travellers stand in pools of wintry light 
Offering themselves to morn¡¯s long slanting arrows.
The train¡¯s due; porters trundle laden barrows.
The train steams in volleying resplendent clouds 5 Of sun-blown vapour.
Hither and about Scared people hurry storming the doors in crowds.
The officials seem to waken with a shout Resolved to hoist and plunder; some to the vans Leap; others rumble the milk in gleaming cans.
10 Boys indolent-eyed from baskets leaning back Question each face; a man with a hammer steals Stooping from coach to coach; with clang and clack Touches and tests and listens to the wheels.
Guard sounds a warning whistle points to the clock 15 With brandished flag and on his folded flock Claps the last door: the monster grunts: ¡®Enough!¡¯ Tightening his load of links with pant and puff.
Under the arch then forth into blue day Glide the processional windows on their way 20 And glimpse the stately folk who sit at ease To view the world like kings taking the seas in prosperous weather: drifting banners tell Their progress to the counties; with them goes The clamour of their journeying; while those 25 Who sped them stand to wave a last farewell.


by | |

A Farewell to the World

FALSE world good night! since thou hast brought 
That hour upon my morn of age; 
Henceforth I quit thee from my thought  
My part is ended on thy stage.
Yes threaten do.
Alas! I fear 5 As little as I hope from thee: I know thou canst not show nor bear More hatred than thou hast to me.
My tender first and simple years Thou didst abuse and then betray; 10 Since stir'd'st up jealousies and fears When all the causes were away.
Then in a soil hast planted me Where breathe the basest of thy fools; Where envious arts profess¨¨d be 15 And pride and ignorance the schools; Where nothing is examined weigh'd But as 'tis rumour'd so believed; Where every freedom is betray'd And every goodness tax'd or grieved.
20 But what we're born for we must bear: Our frail condition it is such That what to all may happen here If 't chance to me I must not grutch.
Else I my state should much mistake 25 To harbour a divided thought From all my kind¡ªthat for my sake There should a miracle be wrought.
No I do know that I was born To age misfortune sickness grief: 30 But I will bear these with that scorn As shall not need thy false relief.
Nor for my peace will I go far As wanderers do that still do roam; But make my strengths such as they are 35 Here in my bosom and at home.


by | |

On Elizabeth L. H.

 Epitaphs: i


WOULDST thou hear what Man can say 
In a little? Reader stay.
Underneath this stone doth lie As much Beauty as could die: Which in life did harbour give 5 To more Virtue than doth live.
If at all she had a fault Leave it buried in this vault.
One name was Elizabeth The other let it sleep with death: 10 Fitter where it died to tell Than that it lived at all.
Farewell.


by Robert Seymour Bridges | |

I Will Not Let Thee Go

 I will not let thee go.
Ends all our month-long love in this? Can it be summed up so, Quit in a single kiss? I will not let thee go.
I will not let thee go.
If thy words' breath could scare thy deeds, As the soft south can blow And toss the feathered seeds, Then might I let thee go.
I will not let thee go.
Had not the great sun seen, I might; Or were he reckoned slow To bring the false to light, Then might I let thee go.
I will not let thee go.
The stars that crowd the summer skies Have watched us so below With all their million eyes, I dare not let thee go.
I will not let thee go.
Have we chid the changeful moon, Now rising late, and now Because she set too soon, And shall I let thee go? I will not let thee go.
Have not the young flowers been content, Plucked ere their buds could blow, To seal our sacrament? I cannot let thee go.
I will not let thee go.
I hold thee by too many bands: Thou sayest farewell, and lo! I have thee by the hands, And will not let thee go.


by William Lisle Bowles | |

VII. At a Village in Scotland....

 O NORTH! as thy romantic vales I leave, 
And bid farewell to each retiring hill, 
Where thoughtful fancy seems to linger still, 
Tracing the broad bright landscape; much I grieve 
That mingled with the toiling croud, no more 
I shall return, your varied views to mark, 
Of rocks winding wild, and mountains hoar, 
Or castle gleaming on the distant steep.
Yet not the less I pray your charms may last, And many a soften'd image of the past Pensive combine; and bid remembrance keep To cheer me with the thought of pleasure flown, When I am wand'ring on my way alone.


by William Lisle Bowles | |

I. Written at Tinemouth Northumberland after a Tempestuous Voyage

 AS slow I climb the cliff's ascending side, 
Much musing on the track of terror past 
When o'er the dark wave rode the howling blast 
Pleas'd I look back, and view the tranquil tide, 
That laves the pebbled shore; and now the beam 
Of evening smiles on the grey battlement, 
And yon forsaken tow'r, that time has rent.
The lifted oar far off with silver gleam Is touch'd and the hush'd billows seem to sleep.
Sooth'd by the scene, ev'n thus on sorrow's breast A kindred stillness steals and bids her rest; Whilst the weak winds that sigh along the deep, The ear, like lullabies of pity, meet, Singing the saddest notes of farewell sweet.


by Sir Thomas Wyatt | |

In Spain

 Tagus, farewell! that westward with thy streams 
Turns up the grains of gold already tried
With spur and sail, for I go to seek the Thames
Gainward the sun that shewth her wealthy pride, 
And to the town which Brutus sought by dreams, 
Like bended moon doth lend her lusty side.
My king, my country, alone for whome I live, Of mighty love the wings for this me give.


by Sir Thomas Wyatt | |

Farewell Love and All Thy Laws Forever

 Farewell love and all thy laws forever;
Thy baited hooks shall tangle me no more.
Senec and Plato call me from thy lore To perfect wealth, my wit for to endeavour.
In blind error when I did persever, Thy sharp repulse, that pricketh aye so sore, Hath taught me to set in trifles no store And scape forth, since liberty is lever.
Therefore farewell; go trouble younger hearts And in me claim no more authority.
With idle youth go use thy property And thereon spend thy many brittle darts, For hitherto though I have lost all my time, Me lusteth no lenger rotten boughs to climb.


by Sir Thomas Wyatt | |

A Revocation

 WHAT should I say? 
 --Since Faith is dead, 
And Truth away 
 From you is fled? 
 Should I be led 
 With doubleness? 
 Nay! nay! mistress.
I promised you, And you promised me, To be as true As I would be.
But since I see Your double heart, Farewell my part! Thought for to take 'Tis not my mind; But to forsake One so unkind; And as I find So will I trust.
Farewell, unjust! Can ye say nay But that you said That I alway Should be obeyed? And--thus betrayed Or that I wist! Farewell, unkist!


by Oliver Wendell Holmes | |

The September Gale

 I'M not a chicken; I have seen 
Full many a chill September, 
And though I was a youngster then, 
That gale I well remember; 
The day before, my kite-string snapped, 
And I, my kite pursuing, 
The wind whisked off my palm-leaf hat; 
For me two storms were brewing!

It came as quarrels sometimes do, 
When married folks get clashing;
There was a heavy sigh or two, 
Before the fire was flashing, 
A little stir among the clouds,
Before they rent asunder,--
A little rocking of the trees, 
And then came on the thunder.
Lord! how the ponds and rivers boiled! They seemed like bursting craters! And oaks lay scattered on the ground As if they were p'taters And all above was in a howl, And all below a clatter, The earth was like a frying-pan, Or some such hissing matter.
It chanced to be our washing-day, And all our things were drying; The storm came roaring through the lines, And set them all a flying; I saw the shirts and petticoats Go riding off like witches; I lost, ah! bitterly I wept,-- I lost my Sunday breeches! I saw them straddling through the air, Alas! too late to win them; I saw them chase the clouds, as if The devil had been in them; They were my darlings and my pride, My boyhood's only riches,-- "Farewell, farewell," I faintly cried,-- "My breeches! O my breeches!" That night I saw them in my dreams, How changed from what I knew them! The dews had steeped their faded threads, The winds had whistled through them! I saw the wide and ghastly rents Where demon claws had torn them; A hole was in their amplest part, As if an imp had worn them.
I have had many happy years, And tailors kind and clever, But those young pantaloons have gone Forever and forever! And not till fate has cut the last Of all my earthly stitches, This aching heart shall cease to mourn My loved, my long-lost breeches!


by Edna St Vincent Millay | |

Sonnets 04: Only Until This Cigarette Is Ended

 Only until this cigarette is ended,
A little moment at the end of all,
While on the floor the quiet ashes fall,
And in the firelight to a lance extended,
Bizarrely with the jazzing music blended,
The broken shadow dances on the wall,
I will permit my memory to recall
The vision of you, by all my dreams attended.
And then adieu,—farewell!—the dream is done.
Yours is a face of which I can forget The color and the features, every one, The words not ever, and the smiles not yet; But in your day this moment is the sun Upon a hill, after the sun has set.


by Petrarch | |

SONNET CCIV.

SONNET CCIV.

Mira quel colle, o stanco mio cor vago.

HE BIDS HIS HEART RETURN TO LAURA, NOT PERCEIVING THAT IT HAD NEVER LEFT HER.

P.
Look on that hill, my fond but harass'd heart!
Yestreen we left her there, who 'gan to take
Some care of us and friendlier looks to dart;
Now from our eyes she draws a very lake:
Return alone—I love to be apart—
Try, if perchance the day will ever break
To mitigate our still increasing smart,
Partner and prophet of my lifelong ache.
H.
O wretch! in whom vain thoughts and idle swell,
Thou, who thyself hast tutor'd to forget,
Speak'st to thy heart as if 'twere with thee yet?
When to thy greatest bliss thou saidst farewell,
Thou didst depart alone: it stay'd with her,
Nor cares from those bright eyes, its home, to stir.
Macgregor.


by Petrarch | |

SONNET CCXII.

SONNET CCXII.

Solea lontana in sonno consolarme.

SHE ANNOUNCES TO HIM, IN A VISION, THAT HE WILL NEVER SEE HER MORE.

To soothe me distant far, in days gone by,
With dreams of one whose glance all heaven combined,
Was mine; now fears and sorrow haunt my mind,
Nor can I from that grief, those terrors fly:
For oft in sleep I mark within her eye
Deep pity with o'erwhelming sadness join'd;
And oft I seem to hear on every wind
Accents, which from my breast chase peace and joy.
"That last dark eve," she cries, "remember'st thou,
When to those doting eyes I bade farewell,
[Pg 219]Forced by the time's relentless tyranny?
I had not then the power, nor heart to tell,
What thou shalt find, alas! too surely true—
Hope not again on earth thy Laura's face to see.
"
Wrangham.


by Petrarch | |

SONNET CVIII.

[Pg 138]

SONNET CVIII.

Quanto più desiose l' ali spando.

FAR FROM HIS FRIENDS, HE FLIES TO THEM IN THOUGHT.

The more my own fond wishes would impel
My steps to you, sweet company of friends!
Fortune with their free course the more contends,
And elsewhere bids me roam, by snare and spell
The heart, sent forth by me though it rebel,
Is still with you where that fair vale extends,
In whose green windings most our sea ascends,
From which but yesterday I wept farewell.
It took the right-hand way, the left I tried,
I dragg'd by force in slavery to remain,
It left at liberty with Love its guide;
But patience is great comfort amid pain:
Long habits mutually form'd declare
That our communion must be brief and rare.
Macgregor.


by Petrarch | |

SONNET XXIV.

SONNET XXIV.

Quest' anima gentil che si diparte.

ON LAURA DANGEROUSLY ILL.

That graceful soul, in mercy call'd away
Before her time to bid the world farewell,
If welcomed as she ought in the realms of day,
In heaven's most blessèd regions sure shall dwell.
There between Mars and Venus if she stay,
Her sight the brightness of the sun will quell,
Because, her infinite beauty to survey,
The spirits of the blest will round her swell.
If she decide upon the fourth fair nest
Each of the three to dwindle will begin,
And she alone the fame of beauty win,
Nor e'en in the fifth circle may she rest;
Thence higher if she soar, I surely trust
Jove with all other stars in darkness will be thrust.
Macgregor.


by John Gould Fletcher | |

Away Delights

 AWAY, delights! go seek some other dwelling,
 For I must die.
Farewell, false love! thy tongue is ever telling Lie after lie.
For ever let me rest now from thy smarts; Alas, for pity go And fire their hearts That have been hard to thee! Mine was not so.
Never again deluding love shall know me, For I will die; And all those griefs that think to overgrow me Shall be as I: For ever will I sleep, while poor maids cry-- 'Alas, for pity stay, And let us die With thee! Men cannot mock us in the clay.
'


by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe | |

THE FAREWELL.

 [Probably addressed to his mistress Frederica.
] LET mine eye the farewell say, That my lips can utter ne'er; Fain I'd be a man to-day, Yet 'tis hard, oh, hard to bear! Mournful in an hour like this Is love's sweetest pledge, I ween; Cold upon thy mouth the kiss, Faint thy fingers' pressure e'en.
Oh what rapture to my heart Used each stolen kiss to bring! As the violets joy impart, Gather'd in the early spring.
Now no garlands I entwine, Now no roses pluck.
for thee, Though 'tis springtime, Fanny mine, Dreary autumn 'tis to me! 1771.


by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe | |

TO FATHER* KRONOS.

 [written in a post-chaise.
] (* In the original, Schwager, which has the twofold meaning of brother-in-law and postilion.
) HASTEN thee, Kronos! On with clattering trot Downhill goeth thy path; Loathsome dizziness ever, When thou delayest, assails me.
Quick, rattle along, Over stock and stone let thy trot Into life straightway lead Now once more Up the toilsome ascent Hasten, panting for breath! Up, then, nor idle be,-- Striving and hoping, up, up! Wide, high, glorious the view Gazing round upon life, While from mount unto mount Hovers the spirit eterne, Life eternal foreboding.
Sideways a roof's pleasant shade Attracts thee, And a look that promises coolness On the maidenly threshold.
There refresh thee! And, maiden, Give me this foaming draught also, Give me this health-laden look! Down, now! quicker still, down! See where the sun sets Ere he sets, ere old age Seizeth me in the morass, Ere my toothless jaws mumble, And my useless limbs totter; While drunk with his farewell beam Hurl me,--a fiery sea Foaming still in mine eye,-- Hurl me, while dazzled and reeling, Down to the gloomy portal of hell.
Blow, then, gossip, thy horn, Speed on with echoing trot, So that Orcus may know we are coming; So that our host may with joy Wait at the door to receive us.
1774.


by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe | |

THE FAITHLESS BOY.

 THERE was a wooer blithe and gay,

A son of France was he,--
Who in his arms for many a day,

As though his bride were she,
A poor young maiden had caress'd,
And fondly kiss'd, and fondly press'd,

And then at length deserted.
When this was told the nut-brown maid, Her senses straightway fled; She laugh'd and wept, and vow'd and pray'd, And presently was dead.
The hour her soul its farewell took, The boy was sad, with terror shook, Then sprang upon his charger.
He drove his spurs into his side, And scour'd the country round; But wheresoever he might ride, No rest for him was found.
For seven long days and nights he rode, It storm'd, the waters overflow'd, It bluster'd, lighten'd, thunder'd.
On rode he through the tempest's din, Till he a building spied; In search of shelter crept he in, When he his steed had tied.
And as he groped his doubtful way, The ground began to rock and sway,-- He fell a hundred fathoms.
When he recover'd from the blow, He saw three lights pass by; He sought in their pursuit to go, The lights appear'd to fly.
They led his footsteps all astray, Up, down, through many a narrow way Through ruin'd desert cellars.
When lo! he stood within a hall, With hollow eyes.
and grinning all; They bade him taste the fare.
A hundred guests sat there.
He saw his sweetheart 'midst the throng, Wrapp'd up in grave-clothes white and long; She turn'd, and----* 1774.
(* This ballad is introduced in Act II.
of Claudine of Villa Bella, where it is suddenly broken off, as it is here.
)


by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe | |

FAREWELL.

 To break one's word is pleasure-fraught,

To do one's duty gives a smart;
While man, alas! will promise nought,

That is repugnant to his heart.
Using some magic strains of yore, Thou lurest him, when scarcely calm, On to sweet folly's fragile bark once more, Renewing, doubling chance of harm.
Why seek to hide thyself from me? Fly not my sight--be open then! Known late or early it must be, And here thou hast thy word again.
My duty is fulfill'd to-day, No longer will I guard thee from surprise; But, oh, forgive the friend who from thee turns away, And to himself for refuge flies! 1797.