Poetry Forum Areas

Introduce Yourself

New to PoetrySoup? Introduce yourself here. Tell us something about yourself.

Looking for a Poem

Can't find a poem you've read before? Looking for a poem for a special person or an occasion? Ask other member for help.

Writing Poetry

Ways to improve your poetry. Post your techniques, tips, and creative ideas how to write better.

High Critique

For poets who want unrestricted constructive criticism. This is NOT a vanity workshop. If you do not want your poem seriously critiqued, do not post here. Constructive criticism only. PLEASE Only Post One Poem a Day!!!

How do I...?

Ask PoetrySoup Members how to do something or find something on PoetrySoup.


Best Famous James Wright Poems

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

Search for the best famous James Wright poems, articles about James Wright poems, poetry blogs, or anything else James Wright poem related using the PoetrySoup search engine at the top of the page.

See Also:

Poems are below...


12
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

A Blessing

 Just off the Highway to Rochester, Minnesota
Twilight bounds softly forth on the grass.
And the eyes of those two Indian ponies Darken with kindness.
They have come gladly out of the willows To welcome my friend and me.
We step over the barbed wire into the pasture Where they have been grazing all day, alone.
They ripple tensely, they can hardly contain their happiness That we have come.
They bow shyly as wet swans.
They love each other.
There is no loneliness like theirs.
At home once more, They begin munching the young tufts of spring in the darkness.
I would like to hold the slenderer one in my arms, For she has walked over to me And nuzzled my left hand.
She is black and white, Her mane falls wild on her forehead, And the light breeze moves me to caress her long ear That is delicate as the skin over a girl's wrist.
Suddenly I realize That if I stepped out of my body I would break Into blossom.
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

As I Step Over A Puddle At The End Of Winter I Think Of An Ancient Chinese Governor

 And how can I, born in evil days
And fresh from failure, ask a kindness of Fate?

 -- Written A.
D.
819 Po Chu-i, balding old politician, What's the use? I think of you, Uneasily entering the gorges of the Yang-Tze, When you were being towed up the rapids Toward some political job or other In the city of Chungshou.
You made it, I guess, By dark.
But it is 1960, it is almost spring again, And the tall rocks of Minneapolis Build me my own black twilight Of bamboo ropes and waters.
Where is Yuan Chen, the friend you loved? Where is the sea, that once solved the whole loneliness Of the Midwest?Where is Minneapolis? I can see nothing But the great terrible oak tree darkening with winter.
Did you find the city of isolated men beyond mountains? Or have you been holding the end of a frayed rope For a thousand years?
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

Autumn Begins In Martins Ferry Ohio

 In the Shreve High football stadium,
I think of Polacks nursing long beers in Tiltonsville,
And gray faces of Negroes in the blast furnace at Benwood,
And the ruptured night watchman of Wheeling Steel,
Dreaming of heroes.
All the proud fathers are ashamed to go home.
Their women cluck like starved pullets, Dying for love.
Therefore, Their sons grow suicidally beautiful At the beginning of October, And gallop terribly against each other's bodies.
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

May Morning

 Deep into spring, winter is hanging on.
Bitter and skillful in his hopelessness, he stays alive in every shady place, starving along the Mediterranean: angry to see the glittering sea-pale boulder alive with lizards green as Judas leaves.
Winter is hanging on.
He still believes.
He tries to catch a lizard by the shoulder.
One olive tree below Grottaglie welcomes the winter into noontime shade, and talks as softly as Pythagoras.
Be still, be patient, I can hear him say, cradling in his arms the wounded head, letting the sunlight touch the savage face.
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

Small Frogs Killed On The Highway

 Still,
I would leap too
Into the light,
If I had the chance.
It is everything, the wet green stalk of the field On the other side of the road.
They crouch there, too, faltering in terror And take strange wing.
Many Of the dead never moved, but many Of the dead are alive forever in the split second Auto headlights more sudden Than their drivers know.
The drivers burrow backward into dank pools Where nothing begets Nothing.
Across the road, tadpoles are dancing On the quarter thumbnail Of the moon.
They can't see, Not yet.
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

Trying To Pray

 This time, I have left my body behind me, crying
In its dark thorns.
Still, There are good things in this world.
It is dusk.
It is the good darkness Of women's hands that touch loaves.
The spirit of a tree begins to move.
I touch leaves.
I close my eyes and think of water.
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

The Jewel

 There is this cave
In the air behind my body
That nobodyt is going to touch:
A cloister, a silence
Closing around a blossom of fire.
When I stand upright in the wind, My bones turn to dark emeralds.
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

To A Blossoming Pear Tree

 Beautiful natural blossoms,
Pure delicate body,
You stand without trembling.
Little mist of fallen starlight, Perfect, beyond my reach, How I envy you.
For if you could only listen, I would tell you something, Something human.
An old man Appeared to me once In the unendurable snow.
He had a singe of white Beard on his face.
He paused on a street in Minneapolis And stroked my face.
Give it to me, he begged.
I'll pay you anything.
I flinched.
Both terrified, We slunk away, Each in his own way dodging The cruel darts of the cold.
Beautiful natural blossoms, How could you possibly Worry or bother or care About the ashamed, hopeless Old man? He was so near death He was willing to take Any love he could get, Even at the risk Of some mocking policeman Or some cute young wiseacre Smashing his dentures, Perhaps leading him on To a dark place and there Kicking him in his dead groin Just for the fun of it.
Young tree, unburdened By anything but your beautiful natural blossoms And dew, the dark Blood in my body drags me Down with my brother.
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

A Winter Daybreak Above Vence

 The night's drifts
Pile up below me and behind my back,
Slide down the hill, rise again, and build
Eerie little dunes on the roof of the house.
In the valley below me, Miles between me and the town of St.
-Jeannet, The road lamps glow.
They are so cold, they might as well be dark.
Trucks and cars Cough and drone down there between the golden Coffins of greenhouses, the startled squawk Of a rooster claws heavily across A grove, and drowns.
The gumming snarl of some grouchy dog sounds, And a man bitterly shifts his broken gears.
True night still hangs on, Mist cluttered with a racket of its own.
Now on the mountainside, A little way downhill among turning rucks, A square takes form in the side of a dim wall.
I hear a bucket rattle or something, tinny, No other stirring behind the dim face Of the goatherd's house.
I imagine His goats are still sleeping, dreaming Of the fresh roses Beyond the walls of the greenhouse below them.
And of lettuce leaves opening in Tunisia.
I turn, and somehow Impossibly hovering in the air over everything, The Mediterranean, nearer to the moon Than this mountain is, Shines.
A voice clearly Tells me to snap out of it.
Galway Mutters out of the house and up the stone stairs To start the motor.
The moon and the stars Suddenly flicker out, and the whole mountain Appears, pale as a shell.
Look, the sea has not fallen and broken Our heads.
How can I feel so warm Here in the dead center of January? I can Scarcely believe it, and yet I have to, this is The only life I have.
I get up from the stone.
My body mumbles something unseemly And follows me.
Now we are all sitting here strangely On top of sunlight.
Written by James Wright | Create an image from this poem

Northern Pike

 All right.
Try this, Then.
Every body I know and care for, And every body Else is going To die in a loneliness I can't imagine and a pain I don't know.
We had To go on living.
We Untangled the net, we slit The body of this fish Open from the hinge of the tail To a place beneath the chin I wish I could sing of.
I would just as soon we let The living go on living.
An old poet whom we believe in Said the same thing, and so We paused among the dark cattails and prayed For the muskrats, For the ripples below their tails, For the little movements that we knew the crawdads were making under water, For the right-hand wrist of my cousin who is a policeman.
We prayed for the game warden's blindness.
We prayed for the road home.
We ate the fish.
There must be something very beautiful in my body, I am so happy.
12