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Famous Afflict Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Chaucer, Geoffrey
To whom all this world fleeth for succour,
To have release of sin, of sorrow, of teen!*                 *affliction
Glorious Virgin! of all flowers flow'r,
To thee I flee, confounded in errour!
Help and relieve, almighty debonair,*                  *gracious, gentle
Have mercy of my perilous languour!
Vanquish'd me hath my cruel adversair.


Bounty* so fix'd hath in thy heart his tent,          *goodness, chari...Read More

by Gray, Thomas
...hter of Jove, relentless Power,
Thou tamer of the human breast,
Whose iron scourge and tort'ring hour
The Bad affright, afflict the Best!
Bound in thy adamantine chain
The Proud are taught to taste of pain,
And purple Tyrants vainly groan
With pangs unfelt before, unpitied and alone.

When first thy Sire to send on earth
Virtue, his darling child, designed,
To thee he gave the heav'nly Birth,
And bade to form her infant mind.
Stern rugged Nurse! thy rigid lore
With pa...Read More

by Philips, Katherine
...e witches keep their Sabbath here,
And wanton devils make retreat.
Who in malicious sport appear,
Our sense both to afflict and cheat;
And here within a thousand holes
Are nest of adders and of owls.


The raven with his dismal cries,
That mortal augury of Fate,
Those ghastly goblins ratifies,
Which in these gloomy places wait.
On a curs'd tree the wind does move
A carcase which did once belong
To one that hang'd himself for love
Of a fair Nymph that did him wr...Read More

by Milton, John
Extorts, or pleasure to do ill excites?
What but thy malice moved thee to misdeem
Of righteous Job, then cruelly to afflict him
With all inflictions? but his patience won.
The other service was thy chosen task,
To be a liar in four hundred mouths;
For lying is thy sustenance, thy food.
Yet thou pretend'st to truth! all oracles 
By thee are given, and what confessed more true
Among the nations? That hath been thy craft,
By mixing somewhat true to vent more lies.Read More

by Shelley, Percy Bysshe again behind:
While from their loud abysses howling throng
The genii of the storm, urging the rage
Of whirlwind, and afflict me with keen hail.
And yet to me welcome is day and night,
Whether one breaks the hoar frost of the morn,
Or starry, dim, and slow, the other climbs
The leaden-coloured east; for then they lead
The wingless, crawling hours, one among whom
--As some dark Priest hales the reluctant victim--
Shall drag thee, cruel King, to kiss the blood
From these ...Read More

by Spenser, Edmund
...tless stay 
In princes' court, and expectation vain 
Of idle hopes, which still do fly away 
Like empty shadows, did afflict my brain,) 
Walk'd forth to ease my pain 10 
Along the shore of silver-streaming Thames, 
Whose rutty bank, the which his river hems, 
Was painted all with variable flowers, 
And all the meads adorn'd with dainty gems 
Fit to deck maidens' bowers, 15 
And crown their paramours 
Against the bridal day, which is not long: 
Sweet Thames! run so...Read More

by Watts, Isaac
...but a tiresome burden prove,
If I were banish'd from the Lord.

Amidst the wakeful hours of night,
When busy cares afflict my head,
One thought of thee gives new delight,
And adds refreshment to my bed.

I'll lift my hands, I'll raise my voice,
While I have breath to pray or praise;
This work shall make my heart rejoice,
And spend the remnant of my days....Read More

by Milton, John
...these? for with joint pace I hear 
The tread of many feet stearing this way;
Perhaps my enemies who come to stare
At my affliction, and perhaps to insult,
Thir daily practice to afflict me more.

Chor: This, this is he; softly a while,
Let us not break in upon him;
O change beyond report, thought, or belief!
See how he lies at random, carelessly diffus'd,
With languish't head unpropt,
As one past hope, abandon'd 
And by himself given over;
In slavish habit, ill-fitted wee...Read More

by Petrarch, Francesco
...nt, lingering on the past,[Pg 114]Afflict me so, that envious thoughts I castOn those who life's dark shore have left behind.Love racks my bosom: Fortune's wintry windKills every comfort: my weak mind at lastIs chafed and pines, so many ills and vastExpose its pea...Read More

by Moody, William Vaughn
...ngeness caught 
And prey to troubled thought 
Do I devise 
These foolish shifts and slight; 
Only to shield me from the afflicting sense 
Of some waste influence 
Which from this morning face and lustrous hair 
Breathes on me sudden ruin and despair. 
In any other guise, 
With any but this girlish depth of gaze, 
Your coming had not so unsealed and poured 
The dusty amphoras where I had stored 
The drippings of the winepress of my days. 
I think these eyes foresee, 
N...Read More

by Pythagoras, is the part of a miserable man to speak and to act without reflection.
29. But do the thing which will not afflict you afterwards, nor oblige you to repentance.
30. Never do anything which you do not understand.
31. But learn all you ought to know, and by that means you will lead a very pleasant life.
32. in no way neglect the health of your body;
33. But give it drink and meat in due measure, and also the exercise of which it need...Read More

by Prior, Matthew cast your eye? 
But, when your cares to her you sing, 
You dare not tell her whence they spring: 
Does it not more afflict your heart, 
That in those cares she bears a part? 
When you the flowers for Chloe twine, 
Why do you to her garland join 
The meanest bud that falls from mine? 
Simplest of swains! the world may see 
Whom Chloe loves, and who loves me....Read More

by Dickinson, Emily
...Squirrel fills His Pockets
And the Berries stare
How can I bear their jocund Faces
Thou from Here, so far?

'Twouldn't afflict a Robin --
All His Goods have Wings --
I -- do not fly, so wherefore
My Perennial Things?...Read More

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