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Best Famous Romantic Poems

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

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Written by Allen Ginsberg | Create an image from this poem

Death and Fame

 When I die
I don't care what happens to my body
throw ashes in the air, scatter 'em in East River
bury an urn in Elizabeth New Jersey, B'nai Israel Cemetery
But l want a big funeral
St.
Patrick's Cathedral, St.
Mark's Church, the largest synagogue in Manhattan First, there's family, brother, nephews, spry aged Edith stepmother 96, Aunt Honey from old Newark, Doctor Joel, cousin Mindy, brother Gene one eyed one ear'd, sister- in-law blonde Connie, five nephews, stepbrothers & sisters their grandchildren, companion Peter Orlovsky, caretakers Rosenthal & Hale, Bill Morgan-- Next, teacher Trungpa Vajracharya's ghost mind, Gelek Rinpoche, there Sakyong Mipham, Dalai Lama alert, chance visiting America, Satchitananda Swami Shivananda, Dehorahava Baba, Karmapa XVI, Dudjom Rinpoche, Katagiri & Suzuki Roshi's phantoms Baker, Whalen, Daido Loorie, Qwong, Frail White-haired Kapleau Roshis, Lama Tarchen -- Then, most important, lovers over half-century Dozens, a hundred, more, older fellows bald & rich young boys met naked recently in bed, crowds surprised to see each other, innumerable, intimate, exchanging memories "He taught me to meditate, now I'm an old veteran of the thousand day retreat --" "I played music on subway platforms, I'm straight but loved him he loved me" "I felt more love from him at 19 than ever from anyone" "We'd lie under covers gossip, read my poetry, hug & kiss belly to belly arms round each other" "I'd always get into his bed with underwear on & by morning my skivvies would be on the floor" "Japanese, always wanted take it up my bum with a master" "We'd talk all night about Kerouac & Cassady sit Buddhalike then sleep in his captain's bed.
" "He seemed to need so much affection, a shame not to make him happy" "I was lonely never in bed nude with anyone before, he was so gentle my stomach shuddered when he traced his finger along my abdomen nipple to hips-- " "All I did was lay back eyes closed, he'd bring me to come with mouth & fingers along my waist" "He gave great head" So there be gossip from loves of 1948, ghost of Neal Cassady commin- gling with flesh and youthful blood of 1997 and surprise -- "You too? But I thought you were straight!" "I am but Ginsberg an exception, for some reason he pleased me.
" "I forgot whether I was straight gay queer or funny, was myself, tender and affectionate to be kissed on the top of my head, my forehead throat heart & solar plexus, mid-belly.
on my prick, tickled with his tongue my behind" "I loved the way he'd recite 'But at my back allways hear/ time's winged chariot hurrying near,' heads together, eye to eye, on a pillow --" Among lovers one handsome youth straggling the rear "I studied his poetry class, 17 year-old kid, ran some errands to his walk-up flat, seduced me didn't want to, made me come, went home, never saw him again never wanted to.
.
.
" "He couldn't get it up but loved me," "A clean old man.
" "He made sure I came first" This the crowd most surprised proud at ceremonial place of honor-- Then poets & musicians -- college boys' grunge bands -- age-old rock star Beatles, faithful guitar accompanists, gay classical con- ductors, unknown high Jazz music composers, funky trum- peters, bowed bass & french horn black geniuses, folksinger fiddlers with dobro tamborine harmonica mandolin auto- harp pennywhistles & kazoos Next, artist Italian romantic realists schooled in mystic 60's India, Late fauve Tuscan painter-poets, Classic draftsman Massa- chusets surreal jackanapes with continental wives, poverty sketchbook gesso oil watercolor masters from American provinces Then highschool teachers, lonely Irish librarians, delicate biblio- philes, sex liberation troops nay armies, ladies of either sex "I met him dozens of times he never remembered my name I loved him anyway, true artist" "Nervous breakdown after menopause, his poetry humor saved me from suicide hospitals" "Charmant, genius with modest manners, washed sink, dishes my studio guest a week in Budapest" Thousands of readers, "Howl changed my life in Libertyville Illinois" "I saw him read Montclair State Teachers College decided be a poet-- " "He turned me on, I started with garage rock sang my songs in Kansas City" "Kaddish made me weep for myself & father alive in Nevada City" "Father Death comforted me when my sister died Boston l982" "I read what he said in a newsmagazine, blew my mind, realized others like me out there" Deaf & Dumb bards with hand signing quick brilliant gestures Then Journalists, editors's secretaries, agents, portraitists & photo- graphy aficionados, rock critics, cultured laborors, cultural historians come to witness the historic funeral Super-fans, poetasters, aging Beatnicks & Deadheads, autograph- hunters, distinguished paparazzi, intelligent gawkers Everyone knew they were part of 'History" except the deceased who never knew exactly what was happening even when I was alive February 22, 1997
Written by George (Lord) Byron | Create an image from this poem

The Tear

 When Friendship or Love
Our sympathies move;
When Truth, in a glance, should appear,
The lips may beguile,
With a dimple or smile,
But the test of affection's a Tear:

Too oft is a smile
But the hypocrite's wile,
To mask detestation, or fear;
Give me the soft sigh,
Whilst the soultelling eye
Is dimm'd, for a time, with a Tear:

Mild Charity's glow,
To us mortals below,
Shows the soul from barbarity clear;
Compassion will melt,
Where this virtue is felt,
And its dew is diffused in a Tear:

The man, doom'd to sail
With the blast of the gale,
Through billows Atlantic to steer,
As he bends o'er the wave
Which may soon be his grave,
The green sparkles bright with a Tear;

The Soldier braves death
For a fanciful wreath
In Glory's romantic career;
But he raises the foe
When in battle laid low,
And bathes every wound with a Tear.
If, with high-bounding pride, He return to his bride! Renouncing the gore-crimson'd spear; All his toils are repaid When, embracing the maid, From her eyelid he kisses the Tear.
Sweet scene of my youth! Seat of Friendship and Truth, Where Love chas'd each fast-fleeting year Loth to leave thee, I mourn'd, For a last look I turn'd, But thy spire was scarce seen through a Tear: Though my vows I can pour, To my Mary no more, My Mary, to Love once so dear, In the shade of her bow'r, I remember the hour, She rewarded those vows with a Tear.
By another possest, May she live ever blest! Her name still my heart must revere: With a sigh I resign, What I once thought was mine, And forgive her deceit with a Tear.
Ye friends of my heart, Ere from you I depart, This hope to my breast is most near: If again we shall meet, In this rural retreat, May we meet, as we part, with a Tear.
When my soul wings her flight To the regions of night, And my corse shall recline on its bier; As ye pass by the tomb, Where my ashes consume, Oh! moisten their dust with a Tear.
Written by Wystan Hugh (W H) Auden | Create an image from this poem

September 1, 1939

I sit in one of the dives
On Fifty-second Street
Uncertain and afraid
As the clever hopes expire
Of a low dishonest decade:
Waves of anger and fear
Circulate over the bright
And darkened lands of the earth,
Obsessing our private lives;
The unmentionable odour of death
Offends the September night.
Accurate scholarship can
Unearth the whole offence
From Luther until now
That has driven a culture mad,
Find what occurred at Linz,
What huge imago made
A psychopathic god:
I and the public know
What all schoolchildren learn,
Those to whom evil is done
Do evil in return.
Exiled Thucydides knew
All that a speech can say
About Democracy,
And what dictators do,
The elderly rubbish they talk
To an apathetic grave;
Analysed all in his book,
The enlightenment driven away,
The habit-forming pain,
Mismanagement and grief:
We must suffer them all again.
Into this neutral air
Where blind skyscrapers use
Their full height to proclaim
The strength of Collective Man,
Each language pours its vain
Competitive excuse:
But who can live for long
In an euphoric dream;
Out of the mirror they stare,
Imperialism's face
And the international wrong.
Faces along the bar
Cling to their average day:
The lights must never go out,
The music must always play,
All the conventions conspire
To make this fort assume
The furniture of home;
Lest we should see where we are,
Lost in a haunted wood,
Children afraid of the night
Who have never been happy or good.
The windiest militant trash
Important Persons shout
Is not so crude as our wish:
What mad Nijinsky wrote
About Diaghilev
Is true of the normal heart;
For the error bred in the bone
Of each woman and each man
Craves what it cannot have,
Not universal love
But to be loved alone.
From the conservative dark
Into the ethical life
The dense commuters come,
Repeating their morning vow;
"I will be true to the wife,
I'll concentrate more on my work,"
And helpless governors wake
To resume their compulsory game:
Who can release them now,
Who can reach the deaf,
Who can speak for the dumb?
All I have is a voice
To undo the folded lie,
The romantic lie in the brain
Of the sensual man-in-the-street
And the lie of Authority
Whose buildings grope the sky:
There is no such thing as the State
And no one exists alone;
Hunger allows no choice
To the citizen or the police;
We must love one another or die.
Defenceless under the night
Our world in stupor lies;
Yet, dotted everywhere,
Ironic points of light
Flash out wherever the Just
Exchange their messages:
May I, composed like them
Of Eros and of dust,
Beleaguered by the same
Negation and despair,
Show an affirming flame.
Written by Denise Duhamel | Create an image from this poem

Sex With A Famous Poet

 I had sex with a famous poet last night 
and when I rolled over and found myself beside him I shuddered 
because I was married to someone else, 
because I wasn't supposed to have been drinking,
because I was in fancy hotel room
I didn't recognize.
I would have told you right off this was a dream, but recently a friend told me, write about a dream, lose a reader and I didn't want to lose you right away.
I wanted you to hear that I didn't even like the poet in the dream, that he has four kids, the youngest one my age, and I find him rather unattractive, that I only met him once, that is, in real life, and that was in a large group in which I barely spoke up.
He disgusted me with his disparaging remarks about women.
He even used the word "Jap" which I took as a direct insult to my husband who's Asian.
When we were first dating, I told him "You were talking in your sleep last night and I listened, just to make sure you didn't call out anyone else's name.
" My future-husband said that he couldn't be held responsible for his subconscious, which worried me, which made me think his dreams were full of blond vixens in rabbit-fur bikinis.
but he said no, he dreamt mostly about boulders and the ocean and volcanoes, dangerous weather he witnessed but could do nothing to stop.
And I said, "I dream only of you," which was romantic and silly and untrue.
But I never thought I'd dream of another man-- my husband and I hadn't even had a fight, my head tucked sweetly in his armpit, my arm around his belly, which lifted up and down all night, gently like water in a lake.
If I passed that famous poet on the street, he would walk by, famous in his sunglasses and blazer with the suede patches at the elbows, without so much as a glance in my direction.
I know you're probably curious about who the poet is, so I should tell you the clues I've left aren't accurate, that I've disguised his identity, that you shouldn't guess I bet it's him.
.
.
because you'll never guess correctly and even if you do, I won't tell you that you have.
I wouldn't want to embarrass a stranger who is, after all, probably a nice person, who was probably just having a bad day when I met him, who is probably growing a little tired of his fame-- which my husband and I perceive as enormous, but how much fame can an American poet really have, let's say, compared to a rock star or film director of equal talent? Not that much, and the famous poet knows it, knows that he's not truly given his due.
Knows that many of these young poets tugging on his sleeve are only pretending to have read all his books.
But he smiles anyway, tries to be helpful.
I mean, this poet has to have some redeeming qualities, right? For instance, he writes a mean iambic.
Otherwise, what was I doing in his arms.
Written by Samuel Taylor Coleridge | Create an image from this poem

Kubla Khan

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.
So twice five miles of fertile ground With walls and towers were girdled round: And here were gardens bright with sinuous rills Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree; And here were forests ancient as the hills, Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.
But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover! A savage place! as holy and enchanted As e'er beneath a waning moon was haunted By woman wailing for her demon-lover! And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething, As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing, A mighty fountain momently was forced; Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail, Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher's flail: And 'mid these dancing rocks at once and ever It flung up momently the sacred river.
Five miles meandering with a mazy motion Through wood and dale the sacred river ran, Then reached the caverns measureless to man, And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean: And 'mid this tumult Kubla heard from far Ancestral voices prophesying war! The shadow of the dome of pleasure Floated midway on the waves: Where was heard the mingled measure From the fountain and the caves.
It was a miracle of rare device, A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice! A damsel with a dulcimer In a vision once I saw: It was an Abyssinian maid, And on her dulcimer she played, Singing of Mount Abora.
Could I revive within me Her symphony and song, To such a deep delight 't would win me That with music loud and long, I would build that dome in air, That sunny dome! those caves of ice! And all who heard should see them there, And all should cry, Beware! Beware! His flashing eyes, his floating hair! Weave a circle round him thrice, And close your eyes with holy dread, For he on honey-dew hath fed, And drunk the milk of Paradise.
Written by Czeslaw Milosz | Create an image from this poem

Unde Malum

 Where does evil come from?
It comes
from man
always from man
only from man
- Tadeusz Rozewicz
Alas, dear Tadeusz,
good nature and wicked man
are romantic inventions
you show us this way
the depth of your optimism
so let man exterminate
his own species
the innocent sunrise will illuminate
a liberated flora and fauna
where oak forests reclaim
the postindustrial wasteland
and the blood of a deer
torn asunder by a pack of wolves
is not seen by anyone
a hawk falls upon a hare
without witness
evil disappears from the world
and consciousness with it
Of course, dear Tadeusz,
evil (and good) comes from man.
Written by David Lehman | Create an image from this poem

Shake The Superflux!

 I like walking on streets as black and wet as this one
now, at two in the solemnly musical morning, when everyone else
in this town emptied of Lestrygonians and Lotus-eaters
is asleep or trying or worrying why
they aren't asleep, while unknown to them Ulysses walks
into the shabby apartment I live in, humming and feeling
happy with the avant-garde weather we're having,
the winds (a fugue for flute and oboe) pouring
into the windows which I left open although
I live on the ground floor and there have been
two burglaries on my block already this week,
do I quickly take a look to see
if the valuables are missing? No, that is I can't,
it's an epistemological quandary: what I consider
valuable, would they? Who are they, anyway? I'd answer that
with speculations based on newspaper accounts if I were
Donald E.
Westlake, whose novels I'm hooked on, but this first cigarette after twenty-four hours of abstinence tastes so good it makes me want to include it in my catalogue of pleasures designed to hide the ugliness or sweep it away the way the violent overflow of rain over cliffs cleans the sewers and drains of Ithaca whose waterfalls head my list, followed by crudites of carrots and beets, roots and all, with rained-on radishes, too beautiful to eat, and the pure pleasure of talking, talking and not knowing where the talk will lead, but willing to take my chances.
Furthermore I shall enumerate some varieties of tulips (Bacchus, Tantalus, Dardanelles) and other flowers with names that have a life of their own (Love Lies Bleeding, Dwarf Blue Bedding, Burning Bush, Torch Lily, Narcissus).
Mostly, as I've implied, it's the names of things that count; still, sometimes I wonder and, wondering, find the path of least resistance, the earth's orbit around the sun's delirious clarity.
Once you sniff the aphrodisiac of disaster, you know: there's no reason for the anxiety--or for expecting to be free of it; try telling Franz Kafka he has no reason to feel guilty; or so I say to well-meaning mongers of common sense.
They way I figure, you start with the names which are keys and then you throw them away and learn to love the locked rooms, with or without corpses inside, riddles to unravel, emptiness to possess, a woman to wake up with a kiss (who is she? no one knows) who begs your forgiveness (for what? you cannot know) and then, in the authoritative tone of one who has weathered the storm of his exile, orders you to put up your hands and beg the rain to continue as if it were in your power.
And it is, I feel it with each drop.
I am standing outside at the window, looking in on myself writing these words, feeling what wretches feel, just as the doctor ordered.
And that's what I plan to do, what the storm I was caught in reminded me to do, to shake the superflux, distribute my appetite, fast without so much as a glass of water, and love each bite I haven't taken.
I shall become the romantic poet whose coat of many colors smeared with blood, like a butcher's apron, left in the sacred pit or brought back to my father to confirm my death, confirms my new life instead, an alien prince of dungeons and dreams who sheds the disguise people recognize him by to reveal himself to his true brothers at last in the silence that stuns before joy descends, like rain.
Written by Robert William Service | Create an image from this poem

Kathleen

 It was the steamer Alice May that sailed the Yukon foam.
And touched in every river camp from Dawson down to Nome.
It was her builder, owner, pilot, Captain Silas Geer, Who took her through the angry ice, the last boat of the year; Who patched her cracks with gunny sacks and wound her pipes with wire, And cut the spruce upon the banks to feed her boiler fire; Who headed her into the stream and bucked its mighty flow, And nosed her up the little creeks where no one else would go; Who bragged she had so small a draft, if dew were on the grass, With gallant heart and half a start his little boat would pass.
Aye, ships might come and ships might go, but steady every year The Alice May would chug away with Skipper Silas Geer.
Now though Cap geer had ne'er a fear the devil he could bilk, He owned a gastric ulcer and his grub was mostly milk.
He also owned a Jersey cow to furnish him the same, So soft and sleek and mild and meek, and Kathleen was her name.
And so his source of nourishment he got to love her so That everywhere the captain went the cow would also go; And though his sleeping quarters were ridiculously small, He roped a section of them off to make Kathleen a stall.
So every morn she'd wake him up with mellifluous moo, And he would pat her on the nose and go to wake the crew.
Then when he'd done his daily run and hitched on to the bank, She'd breath above his pillow till to soothing sleep he sank.
So up and down the river seeded sourdoughs would allow, They made a touching tableau, Captain Silas and his cow.
Now as the Captain puffed his pipe and Kathleen chewed her cud, There came to him a poetess, a Miss Belinda Budd.
"An epic I would write," said she, "about this mighty stream, And from your gallant bark 'twould be romantic as a dream.
" Somewhat amazed the Captain gazed at her and shook his head; "I'm sorry, Miss, but we don't take she passengers," he said.
"My boat's a freighter, we have no accommodation space For women-folk - my cabin is the only private palce.
It's eight foot small from wall to wall, and I have, anyhow, No room to spare, for half I share with Kathleen, That's my cow.
" The lady sighed, then soft replied: "I love your Yukon scene, And for its sake your room I'll take, and put up with Kathleen.
" Well, she was so dead set to go the Captain said: "By heck! I like your spunk; you take my bunk and I'll camp on the deck.
" So days went by then with a sigh she sought him so anew: "Oh, Captain Geer, Kathleen's a dear, but does she have to moo? In early morn like motor horn she bellows overhead, While all the night without respite she snores above my bed.
I know it's true she dotes on you, your smile she seems to miss; She leans so near I live in fear my brow she'll try to kiss.
Her fond regard makes it so hard my Pegasus to spur.
.
.
Oh, please be kind and try to find another place for her.
" Bereft of cheer was captain Geer; his face was glazed with gloom: He scratched his head: "There ain't," he said, "another inch of room.
With freight we're packed; it's stowed and stacked - why even on the deck.
There's seven salted sourdoughs and they're sleeping neck and neck.
I'm sorry, Miss, that Kathleen's kiss has put your muse to flight; I realize her amber eyes abstract you when you write.
I used to love them orbs above a-shining down on me, And when she'd chew my whickers you can't calculate my glee.
I ain't at all poetical, but gosh! I guess your plight, So I will try to plan what I can fix up for to-night.
" Thus while upon her berth the wan and weary Author Budd Bewailed her fate, Kathleen sedate above her chewed her cud; And as he sought with brain distraught a steady course to steer, Yet find a plan, a worried man was Captain Silas Geer.
Then suddenly alert was he, he hollerred to his mate; "Hi, Patsy, press our poetess to climb on deck and wait.
Hip-hip-hooray! Bid her be gay and never more despair; My search is crowned - by heck, I've found an answer to her prayer.
" To Patsy's yell like glad gazelle came bounding Bardess Budd; No more forlorn, with hope new-born she faced the foaming flood; While down the stair with eager air was seen to disappear, Like one inspired (by genius fired) exultant Captain Geer.
Then up he came with eye aflame and honest face aglow, And oh, how loud he laughed, as proud he led her down below.
"Now you may write by day or night upon our Yukon scene, For I," he cried, "have clarified the problem of Kathleen.
I thought a lot, then like a shot the remedy I found: I jest unhitched her rope and switched the loving creature round.
No more her moo will trouble you, you'll sleep right restful now.
Look, Lady, look! - I'm giving you.
.
.
the tail end of the cow.
"
Written by Elizabeth Bishop | Create an image from this poem

The Monument

 Now can you see the monument? It is of wood
built somewhat like a box.
No.
Built like several boxes in descending sizes one above the other.
Each is turned half-way round so that its corners point toward the sides of the one below and the angles alternate.
Then on the topmost cube is set a sort of fleur-de-lys of weathered wood, long petals of board, pierced with odd holes, four-sided, stiff, ecclesiastical.
From it four thin, warped poles spring out, (slanted like fishing-poles or flag-poles) and from them jig-saw work hangs down, four lines of vaguely whittled ornament over the edges of the boxes to the ground.
The monument is one-third set against a sea; two-thirds against a sky.
The view is geared (that is, the view's perspective) so low there is no "far away," and we are far away within the view.
A sea of narrow, horizontal boards lies out behind our lonely monument, its long grains alternating right and left like floor-boards--spotted, swarming-still, and motionless.
A sky runs parallel, and it is palings, coarser than the sea's: splintery sunlight and long-fibred clouds.
"Why does the strange sea make no sound? Is it because we're far away? Where are we? Are we in Asia Minor, or in Mongolia?" An ancient promontory, an ancient principality whose artist-prince might have wanted to build a monument to mark a tomb or boundary, or make a melancholy or romantic scene of it.
.
.
"But that queer sea looks made of wood, half-shining, like a driftwood, sea.
And the sky looks wooden, grained with cloud.
It's like a stage-set; it is all so flat! Those clouds are full of glistening splinters! What is that?" It is the monument.
"It's piled-up boxes, outlined with shoddy fret-work, half-fallen off, cracked and unpainted.
It looks old.
" --The strong sunlight, the wind from the sea, all the conditions of its existence, may have flaked off the paint, if ever it was painted, and made it homelier than it was.
"Why did you bring me here to see it? A temple of crates in cramped and crated scenery, what can it prove? I am tired of breathing this eroded air, this dryness in which the monument is cracking.
" It is an artifact of wood.
Wood holds together better than sea or cloud or and could by itself, much better than real sea or sand or cloud.
It chose that way to grow and not to move.
The monument's an object, yet those decorations, carelessly nailed, looking like nothing at all, give it away as having life, and wishing; wanting to be a monument, to cherish something.
The crudest scroll-work says "commemorate," while once each day the light goes around it like a prowling animal, or the rain falls on it, or the wind blows into it.
It may be solid, may be hollow.
The bones of the artist-prince may be inside or far away on even drier soil.
But roughly but adequately it can shelter what is within (which after all cannot have been intended to be seen).
It is the beginning of a painting, a piece of sculpture, or poem, or monument, and all of wood.
Watch it closely.
Written by | Create an image from this poem

Kubla Khan

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan 
A stately pleasure-dome decree : 
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran 
Through caverns measureless to man 
Down to a sunless sea.
So twice five miles of fertile ground With walls and towers were girdled round : And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills, Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree ; And here were forests ancient as the hills, Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.
But oh ! that deep romantic chasm which slanted Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover ! A savage place ! as holy and enchanted As e'er beneath a waning moon was haunted By woman wailing for her demon-lover ! And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething, As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing, A mighty fountain momently was forced : Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail, Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher's flail : And 'mid these dancing rocks at once and ever It flung up momently the sacred river.
Five miles meandering with a mazy motion Through wood and dale the sacred river ran, Then reached the caverns measureless to man, And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean : And 'mid this tumult Kubla heard from far Ancestral voices prophesying war ! The shadow of the dome of pleasure Floated midway on the waves ; Where was heard the mingled measure From the fountain and the caves.
It was a miracle of rare device, A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice ! A damsel with a dulcimer In a vision once I saw : It was an Abyssinian maid, And on her dulcimer she played, Singing of Mount Abora.
Could I revive within me Her symphony and song, To such a deep delight 'twould win me, That with music loud and long, I would build that dome in air, That sunny dome ! those caves of ice ! And all who heard should see them there, And all should cry, Beware ! Beware ! His flashing eyes, his floating hair ! Weave a circle round him thrice, And close your eyes with holy dread, For he on honey-dew hath fed, And drunk the milk of Paradise.
Written by Joyce Kilmer | Create an image from this poem

Easter Week

 (In memory of Joseph Mary Plunkett)

("Romantic Ireland's dead and gone,
It's with O'Leary in the grave.
") William Butler Yeats.
"Romantic Ireland's dead and gone, It's with O'Leary in the grave.
" Then, Yeats, what gave that Easter dawn A hue so radiantly brave? There was a rain of blood that day, Red rain in gay blue April weather.
It blessed the earth till it gave birth To valour thick as blooms of heather.
Romantic Ireland never dies! O'Leary lies in fertile ground, And songs and spears throughout the years Rise up where patriot graves are found.
Immortal patriots newly dead And ye that bled in bygone years, What banners rise before your eyes? What is the tune that greets your ears? The young Republic's banners smile For many a mile where troops convene.
O'Connell Street is loudly sweet With strains of Wearing of the Green.
The soil of Ireland throbs and glows With life that knows the hour is here To strike again like Irishmen For that which Irishmen hold dear.
Lord Edward leaves his resting place And Sarsfield's face is glad and fierce.
See Emmet leap from troubled sleep To grasp the hand of Padraic Pearse! There is no rope can strangle song And not for long death takes his toll.
No prison bars can dim the stars Nor quicklime eat the living soul.
Romantic Ireland is not old.
For years untold her youth will shine.
Her heart is fed on Heavenly bread, The blood of martyrs is her wine.
Written by Henry Lawson | Create an image from this poem

The City Bushman

 It was pleasant up the country, City Bushman, where you went, 
For you sought the greener patches and you travelled like a gent; 
And you curse the trams and buses and the turmoil and the push, 
Though you know the squalid city needn't keep you from the bush; 
But we lately heard you singing of the `plains where shade is not', 
And you mentioned it was dusty -- `all was dry and all was hot'.
True, the bush `hath moods and changes' -- and the bushman hath 'em, too, For he's not a poet's dummy -- he's a man, the same as you; But his back is growing rounder -- slaving for the absentee -- And his toiling wife is thinner than a country wife should be.
For we noticed that the faces of the folks we chanced to meet Should have made a greater contrast to the faces in the street; And, in short, we think the bushman's being driven to the wall, And it's doubtful if his spirit will be `loyal thro' it all'.
Though the bush has been romantic and it's nice to sing about, There's a lot of patriotism that the land could do without -- Sort of BRITISH WORKMAN nonsense that shall perish in the scorn Of the drover who is driven and the shearer who is shorn, Of the struggling western farmers who have little time for rest, And are ruined on selections in the sheep-infested West; Droving songs are very pretty, but they merit little thanks From the people of a country in possession of the Banks.
And the `rise and fall of seasons' suits the rise and fall of rhyme, But we know that western seasons do not run on schedule time; For the drought will go on drying while there's anything to dry, Then it rains until you'd fancy it would bleach the sunny sky -- Then it pelters out of reason, for the downpour day and night Nearly sweeps the population to the Great Australian Bight.
It is up in Northern Queensland that the seasons do their best, But it's doubtful if you ever saw a season in the West; There are years without an autumn or a winter or a spring, There are broiling Junes, and summers when it rains like anything.
In the bush my ears were opened to the singing of the bird, But the `carol of the magpie' was a thing I never heard.
Once the beggar roused my slumbers in a shanty, it is true, But I only heard him asking, `Who the blanky blank are you?' And the bell-bird in the ranges -- but his `silver chime' is harsh When it's heard beside the solo of the curlew in the marsh.
Yes, I heard the shearers singing `William Riley', out of tune, Saw 'em fighting round a shanty on a Sunday afternoon, But the bushman isn't always `trapping brumbies in the night', Nor is he for ever riding when `the morn is fresh and bright', And he isn't always singing in the humpies on the run -- And the camp-fire's `cheery blazes' are a trifle overdone; We have grumbled with the bushmen round the fire on rainy days, When the smoke would blind a bullock and there wasn't any blaze, Save the blazes of our language, for we cursed the fire in turn Till the atmosphere was heated and the wood began to burn.
Then we had to wring our blueys which were rotting in the swags, And we saw the sugar leaking through the bottoms of the bags, And we couldn't raise a chorus, for the toothache and the cramp, While we spent the hours of darkness draining puddles round the camp.
Would you like to change with Clancy -- go a-droving? tell us true, For we rather think that Clancy would be glad to change with you, And be something in the city; but 'twould give your muse a shock To be losing time and money through the foot-rot in the flock, And you wouldn't mind the beauties underneath the starry dome If you had a wife and children and a lot of bills at home.
Did you ever guard the cattle when the night was inky-black, And it rained, and icy water trickled gently down your back Till your saddle-weary backbone fell a-aching to the roots And you almost felt the croaking of the bull-frog in your boots -- Sit and shiver in the saddle, curse the restless stock and cough Till a squatter's irate dummy cantered up to warn you off? Did you fight the drought and pleuro when the `seasons' were asleep, Felling sheoaks all the morning for a flock of starving sheep, Drinking mud instead of water -- climbing trees and lopping boughs For the broken-hearted bullocks and the dry and dusty cows? Do you think the bush was better in the `good old droving days', When the squatter ruled supremely as the king of western ways, When you got a slip of paper for the little you could earn, But were forced to take provisions from the station in return -- When you couldn't keep a chicken at your humpy on the run, For the squatter wouldn't let you -- and your work was never done; When you had to leave the missus in a lonely hut forlorn While you `rose up Willy Riley' -- in the days ere you were born? Ah! we read about the drovers and the shearers and the like Till we wonder why such happy and romantic fellows strike.
Don't you fancy that the poets ought to give the bush a rest Ere they raise a just rebellion in the over-written West? Where the simple-minded bushman gets a meal and bed and rum Just by riding round reporting phantom flocks that never come; Where the scalper -- never troubled by the `war-whoop of the push' -- Has a quiet little billet -- breeding rabbits in the bush; Where the idle shanty-keeper never fails to make a draw, And the dummy gets his tucker through provisions in the law; Where the labour-agitator -- when the shearers rise in might -- Makes his money sacrificing all his substance for The Right; Where the squatter makes his fortune, and `the seasons rise and fall', And the poor and honest bushman has to suffer for it all; Where the drovers and the shearers and the bushmen and the rest Never reach the Eldorado of the poets of the West.
And you think the bush is purer and that life is better there, But it doesn't seem to pay you like the `squalid street and square'.
Pray inform us, City Bushman, where you read, in prose or verse, Of the awful `city urchin who would greet you with a curse'.
There are golden hearts in gutters, though their owners lack the fat, And we'll back a teamster's offspring to outswear a city brat.
Do you think we're never jolly where the trams and buses rage? Did you hear the gods in chorus when `Ri-tooral' held the stage? Did you catch a ring of sorrow in the city urchin's voice When he yelled for Billy Elton, when he thumped the floor for Royce? Do the bushmen, down on pleasure, miss the everlasting stars When they drink and flirt and so on in the glow of private bars? You've a down on `trams and buses', or the `roar' of 'em, you said, And the `filthy, dirty attic', where you never toiled for bread.
(And about that self-same attic -- Lord! wherever have you been? For the struggling needlewoman mostly keeps her attic clean.
) But you'll find it very jolly with the cuff-and-collar push, And the city seems to suit you, while you rave about the bush.
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.
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You'll admit that Up-the Country, more especially in drought, Isn't quite the Eldorado that the poets rave about, Yet at times we long to gallop where the reckless bushman rides In the wake of startled brumbies that are flying for their hides; Long to feel the saddle tremble once again between our knees And to hear the stockwhips rattle just like rifles in the trees! Long to feel the bridle-leather tugging strongly in the hand And to feel once more a little like a native of the land.
And the ring of bitter feeling in the jingling of our rhymes Isn't suited to the country nor the spirit of the times.
Let us go together droving, and returning, if we live, Try to understand each other while we reckon up the div.
Written by John Williams | Create an image from this poem

A Benediction Of The Air

 In every presence there is absence.
When we're together, the spaces between Threaten to enclose our bodies And isolate our spirits.
The mirror reflects what we are not, And we wonder if our mate Suspects a fatal misreading Of our original text, Not to mention the dreaded subtext.
Reality, we fear, mocks appearance.
Or is trapped in a hall of mirrors Where infinite regress prevents A grateful egress.
That is, We can never know the meaning Of being two-in-one, Or if we are one-in-two.
What-I-Am is grieved at What-I'm-Not.
What-We-Should-Be is numbed by What-We-Are.
Yes, I'm playing word games With the idea of marriage, Musing over how even we can Secularize Holy wedlock.
Or to figure it another way, To wonder why two televisions In the same house seem natural symbols Of the family in decline.
Yet you are present to me now.
I sense you keenly, at work, Bending red in face to reach A last defiant spot of yellow On those horrific kitchen cabinets.
Your honey hair flecked with paint; Your large soft hidden breasts Pushing down against your shirt.
The hemispheres of those buttocks Curving into uncompromising hips.
To embrace you would be to take hold Of my life in all its substance.
Without romance, I say that if I were to deconstruct myself And fling the pieces at random, They would compose themselves Into your shape.
But I guess that is romantic, The old mystification- Cramming two bodies Into a single space.
Amen! Our separation has taught me That, dwelling in mind, The corporeality Of mates has spiritual mass Which may be formulated: Memory times desire over distance Yields a bodying forth.
Thus I project into the Deadly space between us A corposant,Pulsating a language That will cleave to you In the coolness of sleep With insubstantiality So fierce as to leave its dampness On the morning sheets, Or so gentle As to fan your brow While you paint the kitchen.
A body like a breath, Whispering the axiom By which all religions are blessed: In every absence there is presence.
Bene Bene Benedictus.
Written by Thomas Warton | Create an image from this poem

While Summer Suns Oer the Gay Prospect Playd

 While summer suns o'er the gay prospect play'd,
Through Surrey's verdant scenes, where Epsom spread
'Mid intermingling elms her flowery meads,
And Hascombe's hill, in towering groves array'd,
Rear'd its romantic steep, with mind serene,
I journey'd blithe.
Full pensive I return'd; For now my breast with hopeless passion burn'd, Wet with hoar mists appear'd the gaudy scene, Which late in careless indolence I pass'd; And Autumn all around those hues had cast Where past delight my recent grief might trace.
Sad change, that Nature a congenial gloom Should wear, when most, my cheerless mood to chase, I wish'd her green attire, and wonted bloom!
Written by Robert Southey | Create an image from this poem

To Contemplation

 Faint gleams the evening radiance thro' the sky,
The sober twilight dimly darkens round;
In short quick circles the shrill bat flits by,
And the slow vapour curls along the ground.
Now the pleas'd eye from yon lone cottage sees On the green mead the smoke long-shadowing play; The Red-breast on the blossom'd spray Warbles wild her latest lay, And sleeps along the dale the silent breeze.
Calm CONTEMPLATION,'tis thy favorite hour! Come fill my bosom, tranquillizing Power.
Meek Power! I view thee on the calmy shore When Ocean stills his waves to rest; Or when slow-moving on the surge's hoar Meet with deep hollow roar And whiten o'er his breast; For lo! the Moon with softer radiance gleams, And lovelier heave the billows in her beams.
When the low gales of evening moan along, I love with thee to feel the calm cool breeze, And roam the pathless forest wilds among, Listening the mellow murmur of the trees Full-foliaged as they lift their arms on high And wave their shadowy heads in wildest melody.
Or lead me where amid the tranquil vale The broken stream flows on in silver light, And I will linger where the gale O'er the bank of violets sighs, Listening to hear its soften'd sounds arise; And hearken the dull beetle's drowsy flight, And watch the horn-eyed snail Creep o'er his long moon-glittering trail, And mark where radiant thro' the night Moves in the grass-green hedge the glow-worms living light.
Thee meekest Power! I love to meet, As oft with even solitary pace The scatter'd Abbeys hallowed rounds I trace And listen to the echoings of my feet.
Or on the half demolished tomb, Whole warning texts anticipate my doom: Mark the clear orb of night Cast thro' the storying glass a faintly-varied light.
Nor will I not in some more gloomy hour Invoke with fearless awe thine holier power, Wandering beneath the sainted pile When the blast moans along the darksome aisle, And clattering patters all around The midnight shower with dreary sound.
But sweeter 'tis to wander wild By melancholy dreams beguil'd, While the summer moon's pale ray Faintly guides me on my way To the lone romantic glen Far from all the haunts of men, Where no noise of uproar rude Breaks the calm of solitude.
But soothing Silence sleeps in all Save the neighbouring waterfall, Whose hoarse waters falling near Load with hollow sounds the ear, And with down-dasht torrent white Gleam hoary thro' the shades of night.
Thus wandering silent on and slow I'll nurse Reflection's sacred woe, And muse upon the perish'd day When Hope would weave her visions gay, Ere FANCY chill'd by adverse fate Left sad REALITY my mate.
O CONTEMPLATION! when to Memory's eyes The visions of the long-past days arise, Thy holy power imparts the best relief, And the calm'd Spirit loves the joy of grief.