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Famous By The Way Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Suckling, Sir John
Such sights again cannot be found 
In any place on English ground, 
Be it at wake or fair.

At Charing Cross, hard by the way 
Where we, thou know'st, do sell our hay, 
There is a house with stairs; 
And there did I see coming down 
Such folks as are not in our town, 
Forty at least, in pairs.

Amongst the rest, one pest'lent fine 
(His beard no bigger, though, than thine) 
Walked on before the rest: 
Our landlord looks like nothing to him; 
The King (God bless him!)...Read More

by Shelley, Percy Bysshe
...I DREAM'D that as I wander'd by the way 
Bare winter suddenly was changed to spring, 
And gentle odours led my steps astray, 
Mix'd with a sound of waters murmuring 
Along a shelving bank of turf, which lay 5 
Under a copse, and hardly dared to fling 
Its green arms round the bosom of the stream, 
But kiss'd it and then fled, as thou mightest in dream. 

There grew pied win...Read More

by Robinson, Edwin Arlington
...I grant you: 
Good occupation for a sonneteer, 
Or for a clown, or for a clergyman, 
But small work for a soldier. By the way, 
When you are weary sometimes of your own
Utility, I wonder if you find 
Occasional great comfort pondering 
What power a man has in him to put forth? 
‘Of all the many marvelous things that are, 
Nothing is there more marvelous than man,’
Said Sophocles; and he lived long ago; 
‘And earth, unending ancient of the gods 
He furrows; and the plough...Read More

by Lazarus, Emma
...first robin on the first spring day. 
A voice for all whom Fate hath set apart, 
Who, still misprized, must perish by the way, 
Longing with love, for that they lack the art 
Of their own soul's expression. For all these 
Sing the unspoken hope, the vague, sad reveries. 


Then Nature shaped a poet's heart--a lyre 
From out whose chords the lightest breeze that blows 
Drew trembling music, wakening sweet desire. 
How shall she cherish him? Behold! she thr...Read More

by Milton, John
Yet have they many baits and guileful spells
To inveigle and invite the unwary sense
Of them that pass unweeting by the way.
This evening late, by then the chewing flocks
Had ta'en their supper on the savoury herb
Of knot-grass dew-besprent, and were in fold,
I sat me down to watch upon a bank
With ivy canopied, and interwove
With flaunting honeysuckle, and began,
Wrapt in a pleasing fit of melancholy,
To meditate my rural minstrelsy,
Till fancy had her fill. B...Read More

by Eliot, T S (Thomas Stearns)
 You must go by a way which is the way of ignorance.
In order to possess what you do not possess
 You must go by the way of dispossession.
In order to arrive at what you are not
 You must go through the way in which you are not.
And what you do not know is the only thing you know
And what you own is what you do not own
And where you are is where you are not.


The wounded surgeon plies the steel
That questions the distempered part;
Beneath the bleedi...Read More

by Eliot, T S (Thomas Stearns)
...y's not there!

And when the Foreign Office finds a Treaty's gone astray,
Or the Admiralty lose some plans and drawings by the way,
There may be a scap of paper in the hall or on the stair--
But it's useless of investigate--Macavity's not there!
And when the loss has been disclosed, the Secret Service say:
"It must have been Macavity!"--but he's a mile away.
You'll be sure to find him resting, or a-licking of his thumbs,
Or engaged in doing complicated long division sums....Read More

by Frost, Robert
...ig butt log,
And the sawyer had slammed the carriage back
To slam end-on again against the saw teeth.
To judge them by the way they caught themselves
When they saw what had happened to the log,
They must have had a guilty expectation
Something was going to go with their slambanging.
Something bad left a broad black streak of grease
On the new wood the whole length of the log
Except, perhaps, a foot at either end.
But when Paul put his finger in the grease,
It wasn...Read More

by Service, Robert William Rooney loved that shawl beyond all rhyme or reason,
And maybe 'twas an heirloom or a cherished souvenir;
For judging by the way she wore it season after season,
I might have been as precious as a product of Cashmere.
So Shamus strolled towards it, and no doubt the colour pleased him,
For he biffed it and he sniffed it, as most any goat might do;
Then his melancholy vanished as a sense of hunger seized him,
And he wagged his tail with rapture as he started in to chew.Read More

by Masefield, John
That luck should play so mean a trick 
And give me leave to knock him out 
After he'd plainly won the bout. 
But by the way the man came at me 
He made it plain he meant to bat me; 
If you'd a seen the way he come 
You wouldn't think he'd crocked a thumb. 
With all his skill and all his might 
He clipped me dizzy left and right; 
The Lord knows what the effort cost, 
but he was mad to think he'd lost, 
And knowing nothing else could save him 
He didn't care what pa...Read More

by Browning, Robert the man the Duke beckoned
From out of the throng, and while I drew near
He told the crone---as I since have reckoned
By the way he bent and spoke into her ear
With circumspection and mystery---
The main of the lady's history,
Her frowardness and ingratitude:
And for all the crone's submissive attitude
I could see round her mouth the loose plaits tightening,
And her brow with assenting intelligence brightening,
As though she engaged with hearty good-will
Whatever he now mig...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
In school matter a greate difficulty.
Ye have said muche thing right well, I say;
But, Dame, here as we ride by the way,
Us needeth not but for to speak of game,
And leave authorities, in Godde's name,
To preaching, and to school eke of clergy.
But if it like unto this company,
I will you of a Sompnour tell a game;
Pardie, ye may well knowe by the name,
That of a Sompnour may no good be said;
I pray that none of you be *evil paid;* *dissatisfied*
A Sompnour is ...Read More

by Belloc, Hilaire these.

No animal will more repay
A treatment kind and fair;
At least so lonely people say
Who keep a frog (and, by the way,
They are extremely rare)....Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
At Rome she had been, and at Bologne,
In Galice at Saint James,  and at Cologne;
She coude* much of wand'rng by the Way. *knew
Gat-toothed* was she, soothly for to say. *Buck-toothed
Upon an ambler easily she sat,
Y-wimpled well, and on her head an hat
As broad as is a buckler or a targe.
A foot-mantle about her hippes large,
And on her feet a pair of spurres sharp.
In fellowship well could she laugh and carp* *jest, talk
Of remedies of love she...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...Both the warden, and eke our fellows all,
And namely* the miller, well-away!" *especially
Thus plained John, as he went by the way
Toward the mill, and Bayard* in his hand. *the bay horse
The miller sitting by the fire he fand*. *found
For it was night, and forther* might they not, *go their way
But for the love of God they him besought
Of herberow* and ease, for their penny. *lodging
The miller said again," If there be any,
Such as it is, yet shall ye have your p...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey'
And to another knight commanded he;
'Go, lead him to the death, I charge thee.'
And happened, as they went by the way
Toward the place where as he should dey,* *die
The knight came, which men weened* had been dead *thought
Then thoughte they it was the beste rede* *counsel
To lead them both unto the judge again.
They saide, 'Lord, the knight hath not y-slain
His fellow; here he standeth whole alive.'
'Ye shall be dead,' quoth he, 'so may I thrive,
That is...Read More

by Shelley, Percy Bysshe
The sleepers in the oblivious valley, died,
And some grew weary of the ghastly dance
"And fell, as I have fallen by the way side,
Those soonest from whose forms most shadows past
And least of strength & beauty did abide."--
"Then, what is Life?" I said . . . the cripple cast
His eye upon the car which now had rolled
Onward, as if that look must be the last,
And answered .... "Happy those for whom the fold
Of ......Read More

by Byron, George (Lord)
They threw their pens down in divine disgust — 
The page was so besmear'd with blood and dust. 


This by the way: 'tis not mine to record 
What angels shrink from: even the very devil 
On this occasion his own work abhorr'd, 
So surfeited with the infernal revel: 
Though he himself had sharpen'd every sword, 
It almost quench'd his innate thirst of evil. 
(Here Satan's sole good work deserves insertion — 
'Tis, that he has both generals in reveration.Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...' is sinne,* properly. *the only true poverty is sin*
Juvenal saith of povert' merrily:
The poore man, when he goes by the way
Before the thieves he may sing and play 13
Povert' is hateful good,14 and, as I guess,
A full great *bringer out of business;* *deliver from trouble*
A great amender eke of sapience
To him that ta...Read More

by Padel, Ruth
...keel! Don't dollop over
All you are, to a man who'll go to town 
On his next little fling. If he's entranced today 
By the way you finger your silk throat inside your collar,
Tomorrow there'll be Olga, Sally, Jane. But then I'd whisper
Go for it, petal. Nothing's as real as what you write.
His funeral, if he's not up to it. What we feel
Is mortal, and won't come again.
So cut, weeks later, to an outside shot: the same girl
Taking cover ("Dear God, he...Read More

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