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Best Famous Mystery Poems

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

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See also: Best Member Poems

by Fleda Brown | |

I Write My Mother a Poem

Sometimes I feel her easing further into her grave, 
resigned, as always, and I have to come to her rescue.
Like now, when I have so much else to do.
Not that she'd want a poem.
She would have been proud, of course, of all its mystery, involving her, but scared a little.
Her eyes would have filled with tears.
It always comes to that, I don't know why I bother.
One gesture and she's gone down a well of raw feeling, and I'm left alone again.
I avert my eyes, to keep from scaring her.
On her dresser is one of those old glass bottles of Jergen's Lotion with the black label, a little round bottle of Mum deodorant, a white plastic tray with Avon necklaces and earrings, pennies, paper clips, and a large black coat button.
I appear to be very interested in these objects, even interested in the sun through the blinds.
It falls across her face, and not, as she changes the bed.
She would rather have clean sheets than my poem, but as long as I don't bother her, she's glad to know I care.
She's talked my father into taking a drive later, stopping for an A & W root beer.
She is dreaming of foam on the glass, the tray propped on the car window.
And trees, farmhouses, the expanse of the world as seen from inside the car.
It is no use to try to get her out to watch airplanes take off, or walk a trail, or hear this poem and offer anything more than "Isn't that sweet!" Right now bombs are exploding in Kosovo, students shot in Colorado, and my mother is wearing a root beer mustache.
Her eyes are unfocused, everything's root beer.
I write root beer, root beer, to make her happy.
from Breathing In, Breathing Out, Anhinga Press, 2002 © 2000, Fleda Brown (first published in The Southern Review, 36 [2000])


by Maya Angelou | |

Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size But when I start to tell them, They think I'm telling lies.
I say, It's in the reach of my arms The span of my hips, The stride of my step, The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman, That's me.
I walk into a room Just as cool as you please, And to a man, The fellows stand or Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me, A hive of honey bees.
I say, It's the fire in my eyes, And the flash of my teeth, The swing in my waist, And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman, That's me.
Men themselves have wondered What they see in me.
They try so much But they can't touch My inner mystery.
When I try to show them They say they still can't see.
I say, It's in the arch of my back, The sun of my smile, The ride of my breasts, The grace of my style.
I'm a woman Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman, That's me.
Now you understand Just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing It ought to make you proud.
I say, It's in the click of my heels, The bend of my hair, the palm of my hand, The need of my care, 'Cause I'm a woman Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman, That's me.


by Maya Angelou | |

Rememberance

Your hands easy
weight, teasing the bees
hived in my hair, your smile at the
slope of my cheek.
On the occasion, you press above me, glowing, spouting readiness, mystery rapes my reason When you have withdrawn your self and the magic, when only the smell of your love lingers between my breasts, then, only then, can I greedily consume your presence.


More great poems below...

by Frank O'Hara | |

Poem

The clouds ache bleakly
and when they can manage it 
crush someone's head in
without a sound of anger.
This is a brutal mystery.
We meet in the streets with our hands in our pockets and snarl guiltily at each other as if we had flayed a cloud or two in our salad days.
Lots of things do blame us; and in moments when I forget how cruel we really should be I often have to bite my tongue to keep from being guilty.


by John Donne | |

The Funeral

WHOEVER comes to shroud me do not harm 
Nor question much 
That subtle wreath of hair about mine arm; 
The mystery the sign you must not touch  
For 'tis my outward soul 5 
Viceroy to that which unto heav'n being gone  
Will leave this to control 
And keep these limbs her provinces from dissolution.
For if the sinewy thread my brain lets fall Through every part 10 Can tie those parts and make me one of all; Those hairs which upward grew and strength and art Have from a better brain Can better do 't: except she meant that I By this should know my pain 15 As prisoners then are manacled when they're condemn'd to die.
Whate'er she meant by 't bury it with me For since I am Love's martyr it might breed idolatry If into other hands these reliques came.
20 As 'twas humility T' afford to it all that a soul can do So 'tis some bravery That since you would have none of me I bury some of you.


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 Sara Teasdale | |

The Mystery

 Your eyes drink of me,
Love makes them shine,
Your eyes that lean
So close to mine.
We have long been lovers, We know the range Of each other's moods And how they change; But when we look At each other so Then we feel How little we know; The spirit eludes us, Timid and free— Can I ever know you Or you know me?


by Christian Bobin | |

untitled

Into the crucible of my solitude, 
you enter like the dawn, you surge forward like fire.
You sweep into my soul like a river bursting its banks.
And your laughter floods all my lands.
When I looked deep inside myself, I found nothing: there, where everything was dark, a huge sun was turning.
There where everything was dead, a small spring was dancing.
A tiny woman who took up so much space: I could not believe it.
Love is the only true knowledge.
Love itself is an impenetrable mystery.
Christian Bobin (translated by C.
Johnston)


by | |

The Holy Book

Turning the golden pages with my fervent hands,
As if my pure fingers were handling light,
O immense and luminous book, your powerful prayer
Unfolds, in my night, the mystical treasure!

My spirit, in the night, opens its angel's glances
To plunge their lustre into the recesses of your wisdom;
For those who read you, the secret will be known,
Of how divine love changes even degradation into radiance.

- Eternal and veiling the the horror of the world,
An ineffable mystery has joined mankind and verse,
The human ideal to the most divine flames,

And from the depth of the flesh to the reaches of the azure,
You lift the veil, the enshrouder of souls,
To the sibylline breath of your enchanted word.


by Remy de Gourmont | |

Litanies of the Rose

Rose with dark eyes, 
mirror of your nothingness, 
rose with dark eyes, 
make us believe in the mystery, 
hypocrite flower,
flower of silence.
Rose the colour of pure gold, oh safe deposit of the ideal, rose the colour of pure gold, give us the key of your womb, hypocrite flower, flower of silence.
Rose the colour of silver, censer of our dreams, rose the colour of silver, take our heart and turn it into smoke, hypocrite flower, flower of silence.


by Robert Seymour Bridges | |

My Delight and Thy Delight

 My delight and thy delight 
Walking, like two angels white, 
In the gardens of the night: 

My desire and thy desire 
Twining to a tongue of fire, 
Leaping live, and laughing higher: 

Thro' the everlasting strife 
In the mystery of life.
Love, from whom the world begun, Hath the secret of the sun.
Love can tell, and love alone, Whence the million stars were strewn, Why each atom knows its own, How, in spite of woe and death, Gay is life, and sweet is breath: This he taught us, this we knew, Happy in his science true, Hand in hand as we stood 'Neath the shadows of the wood, Heart to heart as we lay In the dawning of the day.


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 Paul Laurence Dunbar | |

The Lawyers Ways

 I've been list'nin' to them lawyers 
In the court house up the street,
An' I've come to the conclusion
That I'm most completely beat.
Fust one feller riz to argy, An' he boldly waded in As he dressed the tremblin' pris'ner In a coat o' deep-dyed sin.
Why, he painted him all over In a hue o' blackest crime, An' he smeared his reputation With the thickest kind o' grime, Tell I found myself a-wond'rin', In a misty way and dim, How the Lord had come to fashion Sich an awful man as him.
Then the other lawyer started, An' with brimmin', tearful eyes, Said his client was a martyr That was brought to sacrifice.
An' he give to that same pris'ner Every blessed human grace, Tell I saw the light o' virtue Fairly shinin' from his face.
Then I own 'at I was puzzled How sich things could rightly be; An' this aggervatin' question Seems to keep a-puzzlin' me.
So, will some one please inform me, An' this mystery unroll-- How an angel an' a devil Can persess the self-same soul?


by Dejan Stojanovic | |

Imperfection

Trying too hard to be too good, 
Even when trying to be bad, 
Is too good for the bad 
Too bad for the good.
Perfection seems sterile; It is final, no mystery in it; It's a product of an assembly line.
To accomplish the perfect perfection, A little imperfection helps.


by Walter de la Mare | |

How Sleep the Brave

 Nay, nay, sweet England, do not grieve! 
Not one of these poor men who died 
But did within his soul believe 
That death for thee was glorified.
Ever they watched it hovering near That mystery 'yond thought to plumb, Perchance sometimes in loathèd fear They heard cold Danger whisper, Come! -- Heard and obeyed.
O, if thou weep Such courage and honour, beauty, care, Be it for joy that those who sleep Only thy joy could share.


by Sir John Suckling | |

I prithee send me back my heart

 I prithee send me back my heart,
Since I cannot have thine;
For if from yours you will not part,
Why, then, shouldst thou have mine?

Yet now I think on't, let it lie,
To find it were in vain;
For thou hast a thief in either eye
Would steal it back again.
Why should two hearts in one breast lie, And yet not lodge together? O Love! where is thy sympathy, If thus our breasts thou sever? But love is such a mystery, I cannot find it out; For when I think I'm best resolved, I then am in most doubt.
Then farewell care, and farewell woe; I will no longer pine; For I'll believe I have her heart, As much as she hath mine.


by Emma Lazarus | |

In the Jewish Synagogue at Newport

 Here, where the noises of the busy town, 
The ocean's plunge and roar can enter not,
We stand and gaze around with tearful awe,
And muse upon the consecrated spot.
No signs of life are here: the very prayers Inscribed around are in a language dead; The light of the "perpetual lamp" is spent That an undying radiance was to shed.
What prayers were in this temple offered up, Wrung from sad hearts that knew no joy on earth, By these lone exiles of a thousand years, From the fair sunrise land that gave them birth! How as we gaze, in this new world of light, Upon this relic of the days of old, The present vanishes, and tropic bloom And Eastern towns and temples we behold.
Again we see the patriarch with his flocks, The purple seas, the hot blue sky o'erhead, The slaves of Egypt, -- omens, mysteries, -- Dark fleeing hosts by flaming angels led.
A wondrous light upon a sky-kissed mount, A man who reads Jehovah's written law, 'Midst blinding glory and effulgence rare, Unto a people prone with reverent awe.
The pride of luxury's barbaric pomp, In the rich court of royal Solomon -- Alas! we wake: one scene alone remains, -- The exiles by the streams of Babylon.
Our softened voices send us back again But mournful echoes through the empty hall: Our footsteps have a strange unnatural sound, And with unwonted gentleness they fall.
The weary ones, the sad, the suffering, All found their comfort in the holy place, And children's gladness and men's gratitude 'Took voice and mingled in the chant of praise.
The funeral and the marriage, now, alas! We know not which is sadder to recall; For youth and happiness have followed age, And green grass lieth gently over all.
Nathless the sacred shrine is holy yet, With its lone floors where reverent feet once trod.
Take off your shoes as by the burning bush, Before the mystery of death and God.


by Edwin Markham | |

THE INVISIBLE BRIDE

 THE low-voiced girls that go 
In gardens of the Lord, 
Like flowers of the field they grow 
In sisterly accord.
Their whispering feet are white Along the leafy ways; They go in whirls of light Too beautiful for praise.
And in their band forsooth Is one to set me free-- The one that touched my youth-- The one God gave to me.
She kindles the desire Whereby the gods survive-- The white ideal fire That keeps my soul alive.
Now at the wondrous hour, She leaves her star supreme, And comes in the night’s still power, To touch me with a dream.
Sibyl of mystery On roads unknown to men, Softly she comes to me, And goes to God again.


by Craig Raine | |

Dandelions

 'and we should die of that roar which lies on the other side of silence'
 -- George Eliot, Middlemarch


Dead dandelions, bald as drumsticks,
swaying by the roadside

like Hare Krishna pilgrims
bowing to the Juggernaut.
They have given up everything.
Gold gone and their silver gone, humbled with dust, hollow, their milky bodies tan to the colour of annas.
The wind changes their identity: slender Giacomettis, Doré's convicts, Rodin's burghers of Calais with five bowed heads and the weight of serrated keys .
.
.
They wither into mystery, waiting to find out why they are, patiently, before nirvana when the rain comes down like vitriol.


by Jack Spicer | |

Fifteen False Propositions Against God - Section XIII

 Hush now baby don't say a word
Mama's going to buy you a mocking bird
The third
Joyful mystery.
The joy that descends on you when all the trees are cut down and all the fountains polluted and you are still alive waiting for an absent savior.
The third Joyful mystery.
If the mocking bird don't sing Mama's going to buy you a diamond ring The diamond ring is God, the mocking bird the Holy Ghost.
The third Joyful mystery.
The joy that descends on you when all the trees are cut down and all the fountains polluted and you are still alive waiting for an absent savior.


by James Stephens | |

Hate

 My enemy came nigh, 
And I 
Stared fiercely in his face.
My lips went writhing back in a grimace, And stern I watched him with a narrow eye.
Then, as I turned away, my enemy, That bitter heart and savage, said to me: "Some day, when this is past, When all the arrows that we have are cast, We may ask one another why we hate, And fail to find a story to relate.
It may seem then to us a mystery That we should hate each other.
" Thus said he, And did not turn away, Waiting to hear what I might have to say, But I fled quickly, fearing had I stayed I might have kissed him as I would a maid.


by Jerome Rothenberg | |

A MISSAL LIKE A BONE

 Link by link
I can disown
no link.
(R.
Duncan) I search the passage someone sends & find a missal like a bone.
My hands are white with sweat.
I lay my burden down the ground below me shrinking.
The more my fingers ply these keys the more words daunt me.
I am what a haunt averts, what you who once spoke from my dream no longer tell.
The book is paradise.
An odor is a clue to what was lost.
I seek & speak son of a father with no home or heart.
I bantereed with a friend that there are speeds beyond the speed of light.
I spun around.
the calculus of two plus two, the mystery of false attachments, still persists.
I settled for a lesser light a circumstance found that my words rang true.


by William Strode | |

For A Gentleman Who Kissinge His Friend At His Departure Left A Signe Of Blood On Her

 What mystery was this; that I should finde
My blood in kissing you to stay behinde?
'Twas not for want of color that requirde
My blood for paynt: No dye could be desirde
On that fayre silke, where scarlett were a spott
And where the juice of lillies but a blotte.
'Twas not the signe of murther that did taynt The harmlesse beauty of so pure a saynt: Yes, of a loving murther, which rough steele Could never worke; such as we joy to feele: Wherby the ravisht soule though dying lives, Since life and death the selfsame object gives.
If at the presence of a murtherer The wound will bleede and tell the cause is ther, A touch will doe much more, and thus my heart, When secretly it felt the killing darte, Shew'd it in blood: which yet doth more complayne Because it cannot be so touched againe.
This wounded heart, to shew its love most true, Sent forth a droppe and writ its minde on you.
Never was paper halfe so white as this, Nor waxe so yeelding to the printed kisse, Nor seal'd so strong.
Noe letter ere was writt That could the author's minde so truly hitt.
For though myselfe to foreigne countries flie, My blood desires to keepe you company.
Here could I spill it all: thus I can free Mine enemy from blood, though slayne I be: But slayne I cannot bee, nor meete with ill, Since but by you I have no blood to spill.


by Belinda Subraman | |

My Indian In-laws

 I remember India:
palm trees, monkey families,
fresh lime juice in the streets,
the sensual inundation
of sights and smells
and excess in everything.
I was exotic and believable there.
I was walking through dirt in my sari, to temples of the deities following the lead of my Indian in-laws.
I was scooping up fire with my hands, glancing at idols that held no meaning for me, being marked by the ash.
They smiled at the Western woman, acting religious, knowing it was my way of showing respect.
It was an adventure for me but an arm around their culture for them.
To me it was living a dream I knew I could wake up from.
To them it was the willingness to be Indian that pleased.
We were holding hands across a cultural cosmos, knowing there were no differences hearts could not soothe.
They accepted me as I accepted them, baffled but in love with our wedded mystery.


by Oscar Wilde | |

Ave Maria Gratia Plena

 Was this His coming! I had hoped to see
A scene of wondrous glory, as was told
Of some great God who in a rain of gold
Broke open bars and fell on Danae:
Or a dread vision as when Semele
Sickening for love and unappeased desire
Prayed to see God's clear body, and the fire
Caught her brown limbs and slew her utterly:
With such glad dreams I sought this holy place,
And now with wondering eyes and heart I stand
Before this supreme mystery of Love:
Some kneeling girl with passionless pale face,
An angel with a lily in his hand,
And over both the white wings of a Dove.
FLORENCE.