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Best Famous Women Poems

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

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See also: Best Member Poems

by Fleda Brown | |

The Women Who Loved Elvis All Their Lives

She reads, of course, what he's doing, shaking Nixon's hand, 
dating this starlet or that, while he is faithful to her 
like a stone in her belly, like the actual love child, 
its bills and diapers.
Once he had kissed her and time had stood still, at least some point seems to remain back there as a place to return to, to wait for.
What is she waiting for? He will not marry her, nor will he stop very often.
Desireé will grow up to say her father is dead.
Desireé will imagine him standing on a timeless street, hungry for his child.
She will wait for him, not in the original, but in a gesture copied to whatever lover she takes.
He will fracture and change to landscape, to the Pope, maybe, or President Kennedy, or to a pain that darkens her eyes.
"Once," she will say, as if she remembers, and the memory will stick like a fishbone.
She knows how easily she will comply when a man puts his hand on the back of her neck and gently steers her.
She knows how long she will wait for rescue, how the world will go on expanding outside.
She will see her mother's photo of Elvis shaking hands with Nixon, the terrifying conjunction.
A whole war with Asia will begin slowly, in her lifetime, out of such irreconcilable urges.
The Pill will become available to the general public, starting up a new waiting in that other depth.
The egg will have to keep believing in its timeless moment of completion without any proof except in the longing of its own body.
Maris will break Babe Ruth's record while Orbison will have his first major hit with "Only the Lonely," trying his best to sound like Elvis.
© 1999, Fleda Brown (first published in The Iowa Review, 29 [1999])


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 Sappho | |

To Atthis

My Atthis, although our dear Anaktoria
lives in distant Sardis,
she thinks of us constantly, and

of the life we shared in days when for her
you were a splendid goddess,
and your singing gave her deep joy.
Now she shines among Lydian women as when the red-fingered moon rises after sunset, erasing stars around her, and pouring light equally across the salt sea and over densely flowered fields; and lucent dew spreads on the earth to quicken roses and fragile thyme and the sweet-blooming honey-lotus.
Now while our darling wanders she thinks of lovely Atthis's love, and longing sinks deep in her breast.
She cries loudly for us to come! We hear, for the night's many tongues carry her cry across the sea.


More great poems below...

by Sylvia Plath | |

Winter Trees

The wet dawn inks are doing their blue dissolve.
On their blotter of fog the trees Seem a botanical drawing-- Memories growning, ring on ring, A series of weddings.
Knowing neither abortions nor bitchery, Truer than women, They seed so effortlessly! Tasting the winds, that are footless, Waisting-deep in history-- Full of wings, otherworldliness.
In this, they are Ledas.
O mother of leaves and sweetness Who are these peitas? The shadows of ringdoves chanting, but easing nothing.
note: 12 Ledas: Leda, the maiden who was raped by Zeus in the guise of a swan.


by Edward Estlin (E E) Cummings | |

Anyone Lived In A Pretty How Town

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

wish by spirit and if by yes

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


by Wallace Stevens | |

Of Modern Poetry

The poem of the mind in the act of finding
What will suffice.
It has not always had To find: the scene was set; it repeated what Was in the script.
Then the theatre was changed To something else.
Its past was a souvenir.
It has to be living, to learn the speech of the place.
It has to face the men of the time and to meet The women of the time.
It has to think about war And it has to find what will suffice.
It has To construct a new stage.
It has to be on that stage, And, like an insatiable actor, slowly and With meditation, speak words that in the ear, In the delicatest ear of the mind, repeat, Exactly, that which it wants to hear, at the sound Of which, an invisible audience listens, Not to the play, but to itself, expressed In an emotion as of two people, as of two Emotions becoming one.
The actor is A metaphysician in the dark, twanging An instrument, twanging a wiry string that gives Sounds passing through sudden rightnesses, wholly Containing the mind, below which it cannot descend, Beyond which it has no will to rise.
It must Be the finding of a satisfaction, and may Be of a man skating, a woman dancing, a woman Combing.
The poem of the act of the mind.


by Wallace Stevens | |

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird

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


by Philip Larkin | |

Ambulances

Closed like confessionals, they thread
Loud noons of cities, giving back
None of the glances they absorb.
Light glossy grey, arms on a plaque, They come to rest at any kerb: All streets in time are visited.
Then children strewn on steps or road, Or women coming from the shops Past smells of different dinners, see A wild white face that overtops Red stretcher-blankets momently As it is carried in and stowed, And sense the solving emptiness That lies just under all we do, And for a second get it whole, So permanent and blank and true.
The fastened doors recede.
Poor soul, They whisper at their own distress; For borne away in deadened air May go the sudden shut of loss Round something nearly at an end, And what cohered in it across The years, the unique random blend Of families and fashions, there At last begin to loosen.
Far From the exchange of love to lie Unreachable insided a room The trafic parts to let go by Brings closer what is left to come, And dulls to distance all we are.
1964


by | |

The Shadow

FOLLOW a shadow it still flies you; 
Seem to fly it it will pursue: 
So court a mistress she denies you; 
Let her alone she will court you.
Say are not women truly then 5 Styled but the shadows of us men? At morn and even shades are longest; At noon they are or short or none: So men at weakest they are strongest But grant us perfect they're not known.
10 Say are not women truly then Styled but the shadows of us men?


by Sappho | |

Please

Come back to me Gongyla here tonight 
You my rose with your Lydian lyre.
There hovers forever around you delight:
A beauty desired. 

Even your garment plunders my eyes.
I am enchanted: I who once
Complained to the Cyprus-born goddess 
Whom I now beseech 

Never to let this lose me grace
But rather bring you back to me:
Amongst all mortal women the one
I most wish to see. 

--Translated by Paul Roche 


by Sara Teasdale | |

Jewels

 If I should see your eyes again,
 I know how far their look would go --
Back to a morning in the park
 With sapphire shadows on the snow.
Or back to oak trees in the spring When you unloosed my hair and kissed The head that lay against your knees In the leaf shadow's amethyst.
And still another shining place We would remember -- how the dun Wild mountain held us on its crest One diamond morning white with sun.
But I will turn my eyes from you As women turn to put away The jewels they have worn at night And cannot wear in sober day.


by Emanuel Xavier | |

IT RAINED THE DAY THEY BURIED TITO PUENTE

 It rained the day they buried Tito Puente
The eyes of drug dealers following me
as I walked through the streets
past shivering prostitutes
women of every sex
young boys full of piss
and lampposts like ghosts in the night
past Jimmy the hustler boy 
with the really big dick 
cracked out on the sidewalk
wrapped in a blanket donated by the trick
that also gave him genital herpes 
and Fruit Loops for breakfast
past the hospital where Tio Cesar 
got his intestines taken out
in exchange for a plastic bag 
where he now shits and pisses
the 40’s he consumed for 50 years
past 3 of the thugs 
who sexually assaulted those women 
at Central Park 
during the Puerto Rican Day parade 
lost in their machismo, 
marijuana and Mira mami’s
‘cause boricuas do it better


Tito’s rambunctious and unruly rhythms never touched them 
never inspired them to rise above the ghetto 
and, like La Bruja said, “Ghet Over It!”
his timbales never echoed 
in the salsa of their souls
though they had probably danced 
to his cha-cha-cha
they never listened to the message 
between the beats
urging them to follow their hearts

On a train back to Brooklyn
feeling dispossessed and dreamless
I look up to read one of those 
Poetry In Motion ads
sharing a car with somebody sleeping
realizing 
that inspiration is everywhere these days
& though the Mambo King’s body 
may be six-feet under
his laughter and legend will live forever

The next morning 
I heard the crow crowing, “Oye Como Va”
his song was the sunlight in my universe
& I could feel Tito’s smile 
shining down on me


by | |

Oh, Dear!


Dear, dear! what can the matter be?
Two old women got up in an apple-tree;
One came down, and the other stayed till Saturday.


by Ehsan Sehgal | |

Stupid

"Stupid people follow guidelines provided by websites and books towards love, you should know that are only how to get a beautiful women, men and sex, not the true love, true love does not need any guidelines.
" Ehsan Sehgal


by Ehsan Sehgal | |

Evil weapon

"The beauty of the men and women is the largest weapon of evil to mislead and misguide the weak minds, it can only be defeated believing in God.
" Ehsan Sehgal


by Marcin Malek | |

A SPRING

Long stalks of rain
are growing from the skies
down towards ash-black soil,
softer than deer hearts
frozen in concentration
at river banks

Everything that is not here
lies beyond these waters – more effusive
than a fisherman’s song,
when come evening time
they sail back to theirs rocky homes
settled at Shannon’s ridges
winding like a maggot in a downpour
and greener still
than eyes of women
that bear the same name

Wise men of Cuilcagh –
the orchard’s guardians
they knew the danger,
sowing the seeds of forbidden fruits
That she will come – an innocent girl
Who’d turn her lips and then flow
like morning dew into the world
of underground streams

And when September fog will fall
her ghost will rise up through the night
and like a sea gull at open sea
hanging in midair, once more,
she will look
into the depths of Lough Allen 


by Omer Tarin | |

On Your Asking

You asked me what it was all about, 
Why men and women dwelt so much 
On the slanting tangents 
Of come vague philosophy
And what I felt it was, and why
It was like this?

Sometimes, then, to answer your questions,
I dress my thoughts in brilliant costumes,
Beautiful, eloquent words, 
But to tell the truth
There is no way I can really say
Anything at all;

People have experienced these things--and these
Things are better felt, after all.
As to the 'why' Hanging over your brow Like a dark raincloud of expectancy-- That you must resolve for yourself Before the thunder finally breaks.
.
.
------------- (Pub in ''Bitter Oleander Review'', USA 2012)


by Razvan ?upa | |

I Breathe Out - V. a Shoelace or a Zipper


in the sky above you morning shatters into millions of colored shoelaces;
you could take this as a promise, as the eroticism of space
ablaze high above your head, it would be too much but

otherwise the textile light of the welding torch
would wrap in a package what remains mine
not including the workers by the tramline gesturing obscenely at the women riding

that, too, would be a poem or even
a morning
you’ll never see again
like a final explosion, thanks be to God,
all the objects we stuff with our intent of closeness

(translated from the Romanian by Adam J.
Sorkin with the poet, Marco Polo Quarterly, Fall 2010 Issue #2)


by Ruth Stone | |

Repetition of Words and Weather

A basket of dirty clothes
spills all day long
down the mountain
beating the rocks
with a horrible washer-woman's cry.
Now two riders go by horseback on the dirt road.
Young women talking of antique latches, blind to the dirty linen, smells of urine, bedsores, bowels of old women left on their backs, fat and lye, lies of doctoring men.
Strange weather mid-summer is summer spent.
I open a book of poems.
All lies on the psalter, I say, the dead are silent.
The riders come back chatting like birds.
What would I not give to return that way.
Their horses trot in a break of sunlight over the road.
And I think, what's done is done.
It won't be changed with words.


by Thomas Stearns Eliot (T S) Eliot | |

Preludes

 I

THE WINTER evening settles down
With smell of steaks in passageways.
Six o’clock.
The burnt-out ends of smoky days.
And now a gusty shower wraps The grimy scraps Of withered leaves about your feet And newspapers from vacant lots; The showers beat On broken blinds and chimney-pots, And at the corner of the street A lonely cab-horse steams and stamps.
And then the lighting of the lamps.
II The morning comes to consciousness Of faint stale smells of beer From the sawdust-trampled street With all its muddy feet that press To early coffee-stands.
With the other masquerades That time resumes, One thinks of all the hands That are raising dingy shades In a thousand furnished rooms.
III You tossed a blanket from the bed, You lay upon your back, and waited; You dozed, and watched the night revealing The thousand sordid images Of which your soul was constituted; They flickered against the ceiling.
And when all the world came back And the light crept up between the shutters And you heard the sparrows in the gutters, You had such a vision of the street As the street hardly understands; Sitting along the bed’s edge, where You curled the papers from your hair, Or clasped the yellow soles of feet In the palms of both soiled hands.
IV His soul stretched tight across the skies That fade behind a city block, Or trampled by insistent feet At four and five and six o’clock; And short square fingers stuffing pipes, And evening newspapers, and eyes Assured of certain certainties, The conscience of a blackened street Impatient to assume the world.
I am moved by fancies that are curled Around these images, and cling: The notion of some infinitely gentle Infinitely suffering thing.
Wipe your hand across your mouth, and laugh; The worlds revolve like ancient women Gathering fuel in vacant lots.


by Thomas Stearns Eliot (T S) Eliot | |

Journey Of The Magi

 'A cold coming we had of it,
Just the worst time of the year
For a journey, and such a journey:
The ways deep and the weather sharp,
The very dead of winter.
' And the camels galled, sore-footed, refractory, Lying down in the melting snow.
There were times we regretted The summer palaces on slopes, the terraces, And the silken girls bringing sherbet.
Then the camel men cursing and grumbling And running away, and wanting their liquor and women, And the night-fires going out, and the lack of shelters, And the cities hostile and the towns unfriendly And the villages dirty and charging high prices: A hard time we had of it.
At the end we preferred to travel all night, Sleeping in snatches, With the voices singing in our ears, saying That this was all folly.
Then at dawn we came down to a temperate valley, Wet, below the snow line, smelling of vegetation; With a running stream and a water-mill beating the darkness, And three trees on the low sky, And an old white horse galloped in away in the meadow.
Then we came to a tavern with vine-leaves over the lintel, Six hands at an open door dicing for pieces of silver, And feet kicking the empty wine-skins.
But there was no imformation, and so we continued And arrived at evening, not a moment too soon Finding the place; it was (you may say) satisfactory.
All this was a long time ago, I remember, And I would do it again, but set down This set down This: were we led all that way for Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly, We had evidence and no doubt.
I had seen birth and death, But had thought they were different; this Birth was Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.
We returned to our places, these Kingdoms, But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation, With an alien people clutching their gods.
I should be glad of another death.


by Margaret Atwood | |

Spelling

 My daughter plays on the floor
with plastic letters,
red, blue & hard yellow,
learning how to spell,
spelling,
how to make spells.
* I wonder how many women denied themselves daughters, closed themselves in rooms, drew the curtains so they could mainline words.
* A child is not a poem, a poem is not a child.
There is no either / or.
However.
* I return to the story of the woman caught in the war & in labour, her thighs tied together by the enemy so she could not give birth.
Ancestress: the burning witch, her mouth covered by leather to strangle words.
A word after a word after a word is power.
* At the point where language falls away from the hot bones, at the point where the rock breaks open and darkness flows out of it like blood, at the melting point of granite when the bones know they are hollow & the word splits & doubles & speaks the truth & the body itself becomes a mouth.
This is a metaphor.
* How do you learn to spell? Blood, sky & the sun, your own name first, your first naming, your first name, your first word.


by Erin Belieu | |

Legend of the Albino Farm

 Omaha, Nebraska They do not sleep nights
but stand between

rows of glowing corn and
cabbages grown on acres past

the edge of the city.
Surrendered flags, their nightgowns furl and unfurl around their legs.
Only women could be this white.
Like mules, they are sterile and it appears that their mouths are always open.
Because they are thin as weeds, the albinos look hungry.
If you drive out to the farm, tree branches will point the way.
No map will show where, no phone is listed.
It will seem that the moon, plump above their shoulders, is constant, orange as harvest all year long.
We say, when a mother gives birth to an albino girl, she feigns sleep after labor while an Asian man steals in, spirits the pale baby away.


by Ben Jonson | by Ben Jonson. You can read it on PoetrySoup.com' st_url='http://www.poetrysoup.com/famous/poem/23053/Song_That_Women_Are_But_Mens_Shadows' st_title='Song. That Women Are But Men's Shadows'>|

Song. That Women Are But Men's Shadows

  

VII.
— SONG.
— THAT WOMEN ARE BUT MEN'S
SHADOWS.
 


    Let her alone, she will court you.
Say are not women truly, then,                     5
Styl'd but the shadows of us men ?
At morn and even shades are longest ;
    At noon they are or short, or none :
So men at weakest, they are strongest,
    But grant us perfect, they're not known.
  10
Say, are not women truly, then,
Styl'd but the shadows of us men ?

    Seem to fly it, it will pursue :
So court a mistress, she denies you ;
    Let her alone, she will court you.
Say are not women truly, then,                     5
Styl'd but the shadows of us men ?
At morn and even shades are longest ;
    At noon they are or short, or none :
So men at weakest, they are strongest,
    But grant us perfect, they're not known.
  10
Say, are not women truly, then,
Styl'd but the shadows of us men ?


by John Greenleaf Whittier | |

Disarmament

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