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Famous Ageing Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Scannell, Vernon
...And now another autumn morning finds me
With chalk dust on my sleeve and in my breath,
Preoccupied with vague, habitual speculation
On the huge inevitability of death.

Not wholly wretched, yet knowing absolutely
That I shall never reacquaint myself with joy,
I sniff the smell of ink and chalk and my mortality
And think of when I rolled, a gormless boy...Read More

by Carroll, Lewis
My Second men revered as wise:
My Third from heights of wisdom flies
To depths of frantic folly. 

My First is ageing day by day:
My Second's age is ended:
My Third enjoys an age, they say,
That never seems to fade away,
Through centuries extended. 

My Whole? I need a poet's pen
To paint her myriad phases:
The monarch, and the slave, of men -
A mountain-summit, and a den
Of dark and deadly mazes - 

A flashing light - a fleeting shade -
Beginning, end, and middl...Read More

by Hardy, Thomas
 Is known to none but me." 

"O Memory, where is now my love, 
That rayed me as a god above?" 

"I saw him by an ageing shape 
 Where beauty used to be; 
That his fond phantom lingers there 
 Is only known to me."...Read More

by Service, Robert William
...The height of wisdom seems to me
 That of a child;
So let my ageing vision be
 Serene and mild.
The depth of folly, I aver,
 Is to fish deep
In that dark pool of science where
 Truth-demons sleep.

Let me not be a bearded sage
 Seeing too clear;
In issues of the atom age
 Man-doom I fear.
So long as living's outward show
 To me is fair,
What lies behind I do not know,
 And do not care.

Of woeful fears...Read More

by Yeats, William Butler
...t at ease,
It had but made us pine the more. The abstract joy,
The half-read wisdom of daemonic images,
Suffice the ageing man as once the growing boy....Read More

by Coleridge, Mary Elizabeth fear
To lose what never can be lost,—
Her faith who still delights me most!
So shall I be more than true,
Ever in my ageing new.
So dull habit shall not be
Wrongly call’d Fidelity....Read More

by Raine, Kathleen
...and griefs, successive deities 
That hold their kingdom in the human breast. 
Abandoned by the gods, woman with an ageing body 
That half remembers the Annunciation 
The passion and the travail and the grief 
That wore the mask of my humanity, 
I marvel at the soul’s indifference. 
For in her theatre the play is done, 
The tears are shed; the actors, the immortals 
In their ceaseless manifestation, elsewhere gone, 
And I who have been Virgin and Aphrodite, 
The mourn...Read More

by Pound, Ezra
...I had over prepared the event,
that much was ominous.
With middle-ageing care
I had laid out just the right books.
I had almost turned down the pages.

Beauty is so rare a thing.
So few drink of my fountain.

So much barren regret,
So many hours wasted!
And now I watch, from the window,
the rain, the wandering busses.

"Their little cosmos is shaken" - 
the air is alive with that fact.
In their part...Read More

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