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Famous Artist Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Browning, Robert
"I would have brought my Jerome, frame and all!" 
And meantime you bring nothing: never mind-- 
You've proved your artist-nature: what you don't 
You might bring, so despise me, as I say. 

Now come, let's backward to the starting-place. 
See my way: we're two college friends, suppose. 
Prepare together for our voyage, then; 
Each note and check the other in his work,-- 
Here's mine, a bishop's outfit; criticize! 
What's wrong? why won't you be a bishop too...Read More

by Browning, Robert another part? 
Was the thing done?--then, what's to do again? 
See, in the chequered pavement opposite, 
Suppose the artist made a perfect rhomb, 
And next a lozenge, then a trapezoid-- 
He did not overlay them, superimpose 
The new upon the old and blot it out, 
But laid them on a level in his work, 
Making at last a picture; there it lies. 
So, first the perfect separate forms were made, 
The portions of mankind; and after, so, 
Occurred the combination of the same.<...Read More

by Ginsberg, Allen 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 
Then highschool teachers, lonely Irish librarians, delicate biblio-
 philes, sex liberation troops nay armie...Read More

by Hikmet, Nazim
...lack Congolese regiment.
The accused:
The attorney for the defense:
an overly razed
--that is, overly artistic--
 French painter.
The scene is set.
 We're starting.

The defense attorney presents his case:

this masterpiece
 that stands in your presence as the accused
is the most accomplished daughter of a great artist.
 this masterpiece...
my mind is on fire...
Gentlem...Read More

by Yeats, William Butler
...bol which
Shadows the inherited glory of the rich.

Some violent bitter man, some powerful man
Called architect and artist in, that they,
Bitter and violent men, might rear in stone
The sweetness that all longed for night and day,
The gentleness none there had ever known;
But when the master's buried mice can play.
And maybe the great-grandson of that house,
For all its bronze and marble, 's but a mouse.

O what if gardens where the peacock strays
With delicate fe...Read More

by Milton, John
...d him cast. The broad circumference 
Hung on his shoulders like the moon, whose orb 
Through optic glass the Tuscan artist views 
At evening, from the top of Fesole, 
Or in Valdarno, to descry new lands, 
Rivers, or mountains, in her spotty globe. 
His spear--to equal which the tallest pine 
Hewn on Norwegian hills, to be the mast 
Of some great ammiral, were but a wand-- 
He walked with, to support uneasy steps 
Over the burning marl, not like those steps 
On Heaven'...Read More

by Ashbery, John
...the room
Ends up as something completely different.
It is the principle that makes works of art so unlike
What the artist intended. Often he finds
He has omitted the thing he started out to say
In the first place. Seduced by flowers,
Explicit pleasures, he blames himself (though
Secretly satisfied with the result), imagining
He had a say in the matter and exercised
An option of which he was hardly conscious,
Unaware that necessity circumvents such resolutions.Read More

by Whitman, Walt
..., yet experient of myriads of seasons; 
Of every hue and caste am I, of every rank and religion; 
A farmer, mechanic, artist, gentleman, sailor, quaker; 
A prisoner, fancy-man, rowdy, lawyer, physician, priest.

I resist anything better than my own diversity; 
I breathe the air, but leave plenty after me, 
And am not stuck up, and am in my place. 

(The moth and the fish-eggs are in their place; 
The suns I see, and the suns I cannot see, are in their place;...Read More

by Schiller, Friedrich von
...are o'erthrown;
The spirit that, with pleasure soon matured,
Has in your easy triumphs been inured
To hasten through an artist-whole of graces,
Nature's more distant columns duly places.
And overtakes her on her pathway lone.
He weighs her now with weights that human are,
Metes her with measures that she lent of old;
While in her beauty's rites more practised far,
She now must let his eye her form behold.
With youthful and self-pleasing bliss,
He lends the spheres...Read More

by Dove, Rita
...keep from crying out:
Are you content to conduct your life
as a cliché and, what's worse,

an anachronism, the brooding artist's demimonde?
Near the rue Princesse they had opened 
a gallery cum souvenir shop which featured
fuzzy off-color Monets next to his acrylics, no doubt,

plus beared African drums and the occasional miniature
gargoyle from Notre Dame the Great Artist had
carved at breakfast with a pocket knife.

"Tourists love us.The Parisians, of course"--
she ...Read More

by Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
...And immovable and fast 
Hold the great ship against the bellowing blast! 
And at the bows an image stood, 
By a cunning artist carved in wood, 
With robes of white, that far behind 
Seemed to be fluttering in the wind. 
It was not shaped in a classic mould, 
Not like a Nymph or Goddess of old, 
Or Naiad rising from the water, 
But modelled from the Master's daughter! 
On many a dreary and misty night, 
'T will be seen by the rays of the signal light, 
Speeding along throu...Read More

by Goldsmith, Oliver
...pleasure know
Extorted from his fellow creature's woe.
Here, while the courtier glitters in brocade,
There the pale artist plies the sickly trade;
Here, while the proud their long-drawn pomps display,
There the black gibbet glooms beside the way.
The dome where Pleasure holds her midnight reign
Here, richly decked, admits the gorgeous train;
Tumultuous grandeur crowds the blazing square,
The rattling chariots clash, the torches glare.
Sure scenes like these no tro...Read More

by Sexton, Anne
...r my mother did her best.
She took me to Boston and had my hair restyled.
Your smile is like your mother's, the artist said.
I didn't seem to care. I had my portrait
done instead.

There was a church where I grew up
with its white cupboards where they locked us up,
row by row, like puritans or shipmates
singing together. My father passed the plate.
Too late to be forgiven now, the witches said.
I wasn't exactly forgiven. They had my portrai...Read More

by Bridges, Robert Seymour
Unto the furrow'd care wrought by the son;
But virtue hath transform'd all change to grace:
So that I praise the artist, who hath done
A portrait, for my worship, of the face
Won by the heart my father's heart that won. 

If I could but forget and not recall
So well my time of pleasure and of play,
When ancient nature was all new and gay,
Light as the fashion that doth last enthrall,--
Ah mighty nature, when my heart was small,
Nor dream'd what fearful searching...Read More

by Walcott, Derek
that I said: "Shabine, this is ****, understand!"
But he get somebody to kick my crutch out his office
like I was some artist! That ***** was so grand,
couldn't get off his high horse and kick me himself.
I have seen things that would make a slave sick
in this Trinidad, the Limers' Republic.

I couldn't shake the sea noise out of my head,
the shell of my ears sang Maria Concepcion,
so I start salvage diving with a crazy Mick,
name O'Shaugnessy, and a limey named Head...Read More

by Shelley, Percy Bysshe
...gth its limbs were decked;
The bosom lightly swelled with its full youth;
The countenance was such as might select
Some artist that his skill should never die,
lmaging forth such perfect purity.

From its smooth shoulders hung two rapid wings
Fit to have borne it to the seventh sphere,
Tipped with the speed of liquid lightenings,
Dyed in the ardours of the atmosphere.
She led her creature to the boiling springs
Where the light boat was moored, and said "Sit here,"
And...Read More

by Shelley, Percy Bysshe
From you he only dares to crave 40 
For his service and his sorrow 
A smile to-day a song to-morrow. 

The artist who this viol wrought 
To echo all harmonious thought  
Fell'd a tree while on the steep 45 
The woods were in their winter sleep  
Rock'd in that repose divine 
On the wind-swept Apennine; 
And dreaming some of autumn past  
And some of spring approaching fast 50 
And some of April buds and showers  
And some of songs in July bowers  
And a...Read More

by Trumbull, John
...perfect semblance knew;
Yet still on every blooming face
He pour'd the pencil's flowing grace;
Each critic praised the artist rare,
Who drew so like, and yet so fair.

To him, high floating in the sky
Th' elated Cloud advanced t' apply.
The painter soon his colours brought,
The Cloud then sat, the artist wrought;
Survey'd her form, with flatt'ring strictures,
Just as when ladies sit for pictures,
Declared "whatever art can do,
My utmost skill shall try for you:
But ...Read More

by Harrison, Tony
's to give some higher meaning to your scrawl.'
Don't fucking bother, ****! Don't waste your breath!

'You piss-artist skinhead ****, you wouldn't know
and it doesn't fucking matter if you do,
the skin and poet united fucking Rimbaud
but the autre that je est is fucking you.'

Ah've told yer, no more Greek...That's yer last warning!
Ah'll boot yer fucking balls to Kingdom Come.
They'll find yer cold on t'grave tomorrer morning.
So don't speak G...Read More

by Akhmatova, Anna
...tears and no excuses.

x x x

To lose the freshness of the words and sense, for us,
Is it same as for an artist to lose vision,
Or for an actor -- voice and motion,
Or for a gorgeous woman -- her finesse?

But do not seek now for yourself to keep
What heaven has given to you below:
We have been judged -- and we ourselves both know --
To give away, and not to keep.

Or else alone you go to heal the blind,
To know yourself in heavy hour of doubt
Th...Read More

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