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Famous Achieving Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Achieving poems written by some of the greatest and most-well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous achieving poems. These examples illustrate what a famous achieving poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate).

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by Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
...ked brother  
Seeing shall take heart again. 

Let us then be up and doing  
With a heart for any fate; 
Still achieving still pursuing 35 
Learn to labor and to wait. ...Read more of this...

by Wilcox, Ella Wheeler
...nning and contriving
The endless urging and the hurried driving
Of body, heart and brain!

But ever in the wake of true achieving,
There shine this glowing trail –
Some other soul will be spurred on, conceiving,
New strength and hope, in its own power believing,
Because thou didst not fail.

Not thine alone the glory, nor the sorrow,
If thou doth miss the goal,
Undreamed of lives in many a far to-morrow
From thee their weakness or their force shall borrow –
On, on, ambiti...Read more of this...

by Rilke, Rainer Maria
...gain and again the never-attainable praising;
remember: the hero lives on; even his downfall was
merely a pretext for achieving his final birth.
But Nature spent and exhausted takes lovers back
into herself as if there were not enough strength
to create them a second time. Have you imagined
Gaspara Stampa intensely enough so that any girl
deserted by her beloved might be inspired
by that fierce example of soaring objectless love
and might say to herself Perha...Read more of this...

by Rilke, Rainer Maria
...he praise you cannot attain; remember:
the hero lives on and survives; even his downfall
was for him only a pretext for achieving
his final birth. But nature, exhausted, takes lovers
back into itself, as if such creative forces could never be
achieved a second time.
Have you thought of Gaspara Stampa sufficiently:

that any girl abandoned by her lover may feel
from that far intenser example of loving:
"Ah, might I become like her!" Should not their oldest
sufferings f...Read more of this...

by Robinson, Edwin Arlington
...When he protested, not too solemnly, 
That for a world’s achieving maintenance 
The crust of overdone divinity 
Lacked aliment, they called it recreance; 
And when he chose through his own glass to scan
Sick Europe, and reduced, unyieldingly, 
The monk within the cassock to the man 
Within the monk, they called it heresy. 

And when he made so perilously bold 
As to be scattered forth in black and white,
Good ...Read more of this...

by Dickinson, Emily
...s -- or Peninsulas --
Gethsemane --

Is but a Province -- in the Being's Centre --
Judea --
For Journey -- or Crusade's Achieving --
Too near --

Our Lord -- indeed -- made Compound Witness --
And yet --
There's newer -- nearer Crucifixion
Than That --...Read more of this...

by Milton, John
...ot praise 
Rather your dauntless virtue, whom the pain 
Of death denounced, whatever thing death be, 
Deterred not from achieving what might lead 
To happier life, knowledge of good and evil; 
Of good, how just? of evil, if what is evil 
Be real, why not known, since easier shunned? 
God therefore cannot hurt ye, and be just; 
Not just, not God; not feared then, nor obeyed: 
Your fear itself of death removes the fear. 
Why then was this forbid? Why, but to awe; 
Why, but ...Read more of this...

by Service, Robert William
...each new day endeavour
To do some gentle deed;
For faults beyond our grieving,
What kindliness atone;
On earth by love achieving
A Heaven of our own....Read more of this...

by Arnold, Matthew
...and drink,
Chatter and love and hate,
Gather and squander, are raised
Aloft, are hurl'd in the dust,
Striving blindly, achieving
Nothing; and then they die--
Perish;--and no one asks
Who or what they have been,
More than he asks what waves,
In the moonlit solitudes mild
Of the midmost Ocean, have swell'd,
Foam'd for a moment, and gone.

And there are some, whom a thirst
Ardent, unquenchable, fires,
Not with the crowd to be spent,
Not without aim to go round
In an eddy of...Read more of this...

by Ashbery, John
...t that wasn't
In the cards, because it couldn't have been
The point. Aping naturalness may be the first step
Toward achieving an inner calm
But it is the first step only, and often
Remains a frozen gesture of welcome etched
On the air materializing behind it,
A convention. And we have really
No time for these, except to use them
For kindling. The sooner they are burnt up
The better for the roles we have to play.
Therefore I beseech you, withdraw that hand,
Off...Read more of this...

by Montgomery, Lucy Maud
...or thy best gladly giving, 
With an unfaltering cheer, 
Greeting thee year by year, 
Even in thy dourest mood some good achieving, 
Until I read thy deep-hid meaning clear....Read more of this...

by Hardy, Thomas>.. But lo, me!

Mistress, friend, place, aims to be bettered straightway,
Bettered not has Fate or my hand's achieving;
Sole the showance those of my onward earth-track--
Never transcended!...Read more of this...

by Robinson, Edwin Arlington
...the dead we leave behind us.

"Did he think that he would blind us 
Into such a small believing 
As to live without achieving, 
When the lights have led so far? 
Let him watch or let him wither,-- 
Shall he tell us where we are? 
We know best, who go together, 
Downward, onward, and so far."


Said the Watcher by the Way 
To the fiery folk that hastened 
To the loud and the unchastened, 
"You are strong, I see, to-day. 
Strength and hope may lead you 
To the jo...Read more of this...

by Dickinson, Emily
...These tested Our Horizon --
Then disappeared
As Birds before achieving
A Latitude.

Our Retrospection of Them
A fixed Delight,
But our Anticipation
A Dice -- a Doubt --...Read more of this...

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