Famous Defeat Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Defeat poems written by well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous defeat poems.

These examples illustrate what a famous defeat poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate). The poems may also contain the word 'defeat'.

Don't forget to view our Member Defeat Poems. You can find great defeat poems there too.

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12
 
by Bridges, Robert Seymour
 1
They that in play can do the thing they would,
Having an instinct throned in reason's place,
--And every perfect action hath the grace
Of indolence or thoughtless hardihood--
These are the best:...Read More
by Angelou, Maya
I keep on dying again.
Veins collapse, opening like the
Small fists of sleeping
Children.
Memory of old tombs,
Rotting flesh and worms do
Not convince me against
The challenge. The years
And cold defeat live deep in
Lines...Read More
by Carroll, Lewis
 The First Voice 


HE trilled a carol fresh and free,
He laughed aloud for very glee:
There came a breeze from off the sea: 

It passed athwart the glooming flat -
It...Read More
by Keats, John
 BOOK I

 Deep in the shady sadness of a vale
Far sunken from the healthy breath of morn,
Far from the fiery noon, and eve's one star,
Sat gray-hair'd Saturn, quiet as...Read More
by Chesterton, G K
 DEDICATION 

Of great limbs gone to chaos,
A great face turned to night--
Why bend above a shapeless shroud
Seeking in such archaic cloud
Sight of strong lords and light?

Where seven sunken Englands
Lie...Read More
by Crowley, Aleister
 "Aug." 10, 1911.

Full moon to-night; and six and twenty years
Since my full moon first broke from angel spheres!
A year of infinite love unwearying ---
No circling seasons, but perennial spring!
A...Read More
by Strand, Mark
 1
We are reading the story of our lives
which takes place in a room.
The room looks out on a street.
There is no one there,
no sound of anything.
The tress are heavy...Read More
by Rich, Adrienne
 Good-by to you whom I shall see tomorrow,
Next year and when I'm fifty; still good-by.
This is the leave we never really take.
If you were dead or gone to live...Read More
by Emerson, Ralph Waldo
Give me truths;
For I am weary of the surfaces,
And die of inanition. If I knew
Only the herbs and simples of the wood,
Rue, cinquefoil, gill, vervain and agrimony,
Blue-vetch and trillium, hawkweed,...Read More
by Wilcox, Ella Wheeler
 BOOK FIRST.

I.

ALL valor died not on the plains of Troy.
Awake, my Muse, awake! be thine the joy
To sing of deeds as dauntless and as brave
As e'er lent luster to...Read More
by Hugo, Victor
 THE KNIGHT ERRANT. 
 
 ("Qu'est-ce que Sigismond et Ladislas ont dit.") 
 
 {Bk. XV. iii. 1.} 


 I. 
 
 THE ADVENTURER SETS OUT. 
 
 What...Read More
by Milton, John
 Of Man's first disobedience, and the fruit 
Of that forbidden tree whose mortal taste 
Brought death into the World, and all our woe, 
With loss of Eden, till one...Read More
by Whitman, Walt
 1
I WANDER all night in my vision, 
Stepping with light feet, swiftly and noiselessly stepping and stopping, 
Bending with open eyes over the shut eyes of sleepers, 
Wandering and...Read More
by Swift, Jonathan
 As Rochefoucauld his maxims drew
From nature, I believe 'em true:
They argue no corrupted mind
In him; the fault is in mankind.

This maxim more than all the rest
Is thought too base...Read More
by Shakur, Tupac
when your hero falls from grace
all fairy tales r uncovered
myths exposed and pain magnified
the greatest pain discovered
u taught me 2 be strong
but im confused 2 c u so weak
u said...Read More
by Killigrew, Anne
 IN that so temperate Soil Arcadia nam'd,
For fertile Pasturage by Poets fam'd;
Stands a steep Hill, whose lofty jetting Crown,
Casts o'er the neighbouring Plains, a seeming Frown;
Close at its mossie...Read More
by Tennyson, Alfred Lord
 Queen Guinevere had fled the court, and sat 
There in the holy house at Almesbury 
Weeping, none with her save a little maid, 
A novice: one low light betwixt...Read More
by Stephens, James
 So Eden was deserted, and at eve 
Into the quiet place God came to grieve. 
His face was sad, His hands hung slackly down 
Along his robe; too sorrowful...Read More
by Levine, Philip
 Rain filled the streets 
once a year, rising almost 
to door and window sills, 
battering walls and roofs 
until it cleaned away the mess 
we'd made. My father told...Read More
by Murray, Les
 To go home and wear shorts forever
in the enormous paddocks, in that warm climate,
adding a sweater when winter soaks the grass, 

to camp out along the river bends
for good,...Read More
by Robinson, Edwin Arlington
 I 

We thrill too strangely at the master's touch;
We shrink too sadly from the larger self
Which for its own completeness agitates
And undetermines us; we do not feel -- 
We...Read More
by Tebb, Barry
 AGAINST THE GRAIN



“Oxford be silent, I this truth must write

Leeds hath for rarities undone thee quite.”

 - William Dawson of Hackney, Nov.7th 1704



“The repressed becomes the poem”

 Louise Bogan





1



Well...Read More
by Ayres, Pam
You know this world is complicated, imperfect and oppressed
And it’s not hard to feel timid, apprehensive and depressed.
It seems that all around us tides of questions ebb and flow
And people...Read More
by Milton, John
 All night the dreadless Angel, unpursued, 
Through Heaven's wide champain held his way; till Morn, 
Waked by the circling Hours, with rosy hand 
Unbarred the gates of light. There...Read More
by Dickinson, Emily
 There is a flower that Bees prefer --
And Butterflies -- desire --
To gain the Purple Democrat
The Humming Bird -- aspire --

And Whatsoever Insect pass --
A Honey bear away
Proportioned to...Read More
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Dont forget to view our wonderful member Defeat poems.