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Famous Chaplain Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Burns, Robert
His leg was so tight, and his cheek was so ruddy,
Transported I was with my sodger laddie.

But the godly old chaplain left him in the lurch;
The sword I forsook for the sake of the church:
He ventur’d the soul, and I risked the body,
’Twas then I proved false to my sodger laddie.

Full soon I grew sick of my sanctified sot,
The regiment at large for a husband I got;
From the gilded spontoon to the fife I was ready,
I askèd no more but a sodger laddie.

Bu...Read more of this...

by Browning, Robert
...a fool." 
Whereas I should not dare for both my ears 
Breathe one such syllable, smile one such smile, 
Before the chaplain who reflects myself-- 
My shade's so much more potent than your flesh. 
What's your reward, self-abnegating friend? 
Stood you confessed of those exceptional 
And privileged great natures that dwarf mine-- 
A zealot with a mad ideal in reach, 
A poet just about to print his ode, 
A statesman with a scheme to stop this war, 
An artist whose relig...Read more of this...

by Masters, Edgar Lee
...A chaplain in the army,
A chaplain in the prisons,
An exhorter in Spoon River,
Drunk with divinity, Spoon River --
Yet bringing poor Eliza Johnson to shame,
And myself to scorn and wretchedness.
But why will you never see that love of women,
And even love of wine,
Are the stimulants by which the soul, hungering for divinity,
Reaches the ecstatic vision
And...Read more of this...

by Belloc, Hilaire
Were Cousin Mary, Little Fred,
The Footmen (both of them), the Groom,
The man that cleaned the Billiard-Room,
The Chaplain, and the Still-Room Maid.
And I am dreadfully afraid
That Monsieur Champignon, the Chef,
Will now be permanently deaf-
And both his aides are much the same;
While George, who was in part to blame,
Received, you will regret to hear,
A nasty lump behind the ear.

The moral is that little boys
Should not be given dangerous toys....Read more of this...

by Swift, Jonathan
...was before.
Well; but then they would have had me gone to the cunning man:
"No," said I, "'tis the same thing, the CHAPLAIN will be here anon."
So the Chaplain came in. Now the servants say he is my sweetheart,
Because he's always in my chamber, and I always take his part.
So, as the devil would have it, before I was aware, out I blundered,
"Parson," said I, "can you cast a nativity, when a body's plundered?"
(Now you must know, he hates to be called Parson, ...Read more of this...

by Wheatley, Phillis
...s sacred trust,
Till life divine re-animates his dust.

*The Countess of Huntingdon, to whom Mr. Whitefield was
Chaplain....Read more of this...

by Wilde, Oscar
...lf should rob
The prison of its prey.

He does not wake at dawn to see
Dread figures throng his room,
The shivering Chaplain robed in white,
The Sheriff stern with gloom,
And the Governor all in shiny black,
With the yellow face of Doom.

He does not rise in piteous haste
To put on convict-clothes,
While some coarse-mouthed Doctor gloats,
and notes
Each new and nerve-twitched pose,
Fingering a watch whose little ticks
Are like horrible hammer-blows.

He does not k...Read more of this...

by Swift, Jonathan
Too zealous for the nation's good:
He found the ministers resent it,
Yet could not for his heart repent it.

The chaplain vows he cannot fawn,
Though it would raise him to the lawn:
He pass'd his hours among his books;
You find it in his meagre looks:
He might, if he were worldly wise,
Preferment get and spare his eyes:
But own'd he had a stubborn spirit,
That made him trust alone in merit:
Would rise by merit to promotion;
Alas! a mere chimeric notion.

The doctor...Read more of this...

by McGonagall, William Topaz
...-fearing man that never did his country disgrace. 

The funeral service was conducted in the cathedral by the court chaplain, Dr. Kogel,
Which touched the hearts of his hearers, as from his lips it fell,
And in conclusion he recited the Lord's Prayer
In the presence of kings, princes, dukes, and counts assembled there. 

And at the end of the service the infantry outside fired volley after volley,
While the people inside the cathedral felt melancholy,
As the sound...Read more of this...

by Kipling, Rudyard
...but he is a merchantman."
The skipper peered beneath his palm and swore by the Great Horn Spoon: --
"'Fore Gad, the Chaplain of the Fleet would bless my picaroon!"
By two and three the flags blew free to lash the laughing air: --
"We have sold our spars to the merchantman -- we know that his price is fair."
The skipper winked his Western eye, and swore by a China storm: --
"They ha' rigged him a Joseph's jury-coat to keep his honour warm."
The halliards twanged ag...Read more of this...

by Walcott, Derek
...tried other women
but, once they stripped naked, their spiky cunts
bristled like sea eggs and I couldn't dive.
The chaplain came round. I paid him no mind.
Where is my rest place, Jesus? Where is my harbor?
Where is the pillow I will not have to pay for,
and the window I can look from that frames my life?

3 Shabine Leaves the Republic

I had no nation now but the imagination.
After the white man, the niggers didn't want me
when the power swing to their side...Read more of this...

by Kipling, Rudyard
We 'ave scores to settle --
 Scores for more than beer;
She's the girl to pay 'em --
 That is why we're 'ere!

See the chaplain thinkin'?
 See the women smile?
Twig the married winkin'
 As they take the aisle?
Keep your side-arms quiet,
 Dressin' by the Band.
Ho! You 'oly beggars,
 Cough be'ind your 'and!

Now it's done an' over,
 'Ear the organ squeak,
"'Voice that breathed o'er Eden" --
 Ain't she got the cheek!
White an' laylock ribbons,
 Think yourself so fine!
I'd p...Read more of this...

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