Famous Divorce Poems by Famous Poets
These are examples of famous Divorce poems written by some of the greatest and most-well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous divorce poems. These examples illustrate what a famous divorce poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate).
by Donne, John
...o ever gives, takes liberty:
O, if thou car'st not whom I love
Alas, thou lov'st not me.
Seal then this bill of my Divorce to All,
On whom those fainter beams of love did fall;
Marry those loves, which in youth scattered be
On Fame, Wit, Hopes (false mistresses) to thee.
Churches are best for Prayer, that have least light:
To see God only, I go out of sight:
And to 'scape stormy days, I choose
An Everlasting night....Read More
by Lehman, David
They hasten to the synagogue or build new ones.
They are Jews at last!
They are free to marry other Jews, and divorce them, and intermarry
with Gentiles, God forbid.
They are model citizens, clever and thrifty.
They debate the issues.
They fire off earnest letters to the editor.
They are resented for being clever and thrifty.
They buy houses in the suburbs and agree not to talk so loud.
They look like everyone else, drive the ...Read More
by Kizer, Carolyn
we bayed with the seals.
Then you married someone in Mexico,
broke up in two weeks, didn't bother to divorce,
claimed it didn't count.
You dumped number three, fled to Albany
to become a pedant.
Averse to domesticity, you read for your Ph.D.
Your four-year-old looked like a miniature
You fed him peanut butter from your jar and raised him
on Beowulf and Grendal.
Much later in New York we reunited;
in an elevator at Sak'...Read More
by Crashaw, Richard
...again did wed
This grave 's the second marriage-bed.
For though the hand of Fate could force
'Twixt soul and body a divorce,
It could not sever man and wife,
Because they both lived but one life.
Peace, good reader, do not weep;
Peace, the lovers are asleep.
They, sweet turtles, folded lie
In the last knot that love could tie.
Let them sleep, let them sleep on,
Till the stormy night be gone,
And the eternal morrow dawn;
Then the curtains will be drawn,
And the...Read More
by Gilbert, Jack
...Woke up suddenly thinking I heard crying.
Rushed through the dark house.
Stopped, remembering. Stood looking
out at bright moonlight on concrete....Read More
by Donne, John
Yet, if her often gnawing kisses win
The traiterous bank to gape, and let her in,
She rusheth violently, and doth divorce
Her from her native, and her long-kept course,
And roars, and braves it, and in gallant scorn,
In flattering eddies promising retorn,
She flouts the channel, who thenceforth is dry;
Then say I, That is she, and this am I.
Yet let not thy deep bitterness beget
Careless despair in me, for that will whet
My mind to scorn; and Oh, love dulled with pa...Read More
by Viorst, Judith
..."Jay Spievack, who's fourteen feet tall, could want to fight me.My mom and my dad--like Ted's--could want a divorce.Miss Brearly could ask me a question about Afghanistan. (Who's Afghanistan?)Somebody maybe could make me ride a horse.My mother could maybe decide that I needed more liver.My dad could decide that I needed less TV.Miss Brearly could say that I have to write script and stop printing. (I'm better at printing.)Chris c...Read More
by Stevenson, Robert Louis
Yet the years
Shall bring us ever nearer; day by day
Endearing, week by week, till death at last
Dissolve that long divorce. By faith we love,
Not knowledge; and by faith, though far removed,
Dwell as in perfect nearness, heart to heart.
We but excuse
Those things we merely are; and to our souls
A brave deception cherish.
So from unhappy war a man returns
Unfearing, or the seaman from the deep;
So from cool night and woodlands to a feast
May someone enter, and...Read More
by Donne, John
...d, and proves weak or untrue.
yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain,
But am betrothed unto your enemy.
Divorce me, untie or break that knot again;
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor even chaste, except you ravish me....Read More
by Nash, Ogden
...plies Oh they're all right,
it's only raining straight down.
That is why marriage is so much more interesting than divorce,
Because it's the only known example of the happy meeting of
the immovable object and the irresistible force.
So I hope husbands and wives will continue to debate and
combat over everything debatable and combatable,
Because I believe a little incompatibility is the spice of life,
particularly if he has income and she is pattable....Read More
by Tebb, Barry
...is papers. The madness went undiagnosed
Until his sixtieth birthday. You never let me meet him
Even after our divorce.
In the end you took me on a visit with the children.
A neat flat with photographs of grandchildren,
Stacks of wood for the stove, washing hung precisely
In the kitchen, a Sunday suit in the wardrobe.
An unwrinkling of smiles, the hard handshake
Of work-roughened hands.
One night he smashed up the tidy flat.
The TV scr...Read More
by Scannell, Vernon
...when the mood is gloomy –
I mean imperative
We need nouns, or else of course
Pronouns; words like Maid,
Man, Wedding or Divorce.
A sentence must make sense. Sometimes I believe
Our lives are ungrammatical. I guess that some of
Have misplaced the direct object: the longer I live
The less certain I feel of anything I do.
But now I begin
To digress. Write down these simple sentences:--
I am sentenced: I love: I murder: I sin....Read More
by Lowell, Amy
...eer, without the Emperor! It
but best not consider that. Scratch your head and prick
up your ears.
Divorce is not for you to debate about. She is late? Ah,
the roads are muddy. The rain spears are as sharp as
They dart down and down, edged and shining. Clop-trop! Clop-trop!
A carriage grows out of the mist. Hist, Porter. You
can keep on your hat.
It is only Her Majesty's dogs and her parrot. Clop-tr...Read More
by Masters, Edgar Lee
...t a promise is a promise
And marriage is marriage,
And out of respect for my own character
I refused to be drawn into a divorce
By the scheme of a husband who had merely grown tired
Of his marital vow and duty....Read More
by Matthews, William
...I like divorce. I love to compose
letters of resignation; now and then
I send one in and leave in a lemon-
hued Huff or a Snit with four on the floor.
Do you like the scent of a hollyhock?
To each his own. I love a burning bridge.
I like to watch the small boat go over
the falls -- it swirls in a circle
like a dog coiling for sleep, and its frail b...Read More
by Sexton, Anne
...Your daisies have come
on the day of my divorce:
the courtroom a cement box,
a gas chamber for the infectious Jew in me
and a perhaps land, a possibly promised land
for the Jew in me,
but still a betrayal room for the till-death-do-us—
and yet a death, as in the unlocking of scissors
that makes the now separate parts useless,
even to cut each other up as we did yearly
under the crayoned-in sun.Read More
by Lehman, David
He gave her the finger. She gave him what for.
He gave her a black eye. She gave him a divorce.
He gave her a steak for her black eye. She gave him his money back.
He gave her what she had never had before. She gave him what he had had and
He gave her nastiness in children. She gave him prudery in adults.
He gave her Panic Hill. She gave him Mirror Lake.
He gave her an anthology of drum solos.Read More
by Tebb, Barry
...ther trekked to with
Her cancer-ridden spine. It was doomed from the start. The previous
Tenants had ended in divorce. If the certain salesman and his gleaming
Bride had failed to make it, how could we? Our moves from Huddersfield
And back became more frantic and our peace more fragile.
You always felt lonely in the countryside, while I longed in Leeds
For open vistas cloud-masses over the blue chain of hills, the silence
Of the lanes, the sheep bells...Read More
by Marvell, Andrew
...d be in the Storm.
The Court him grants the lawful Form;
Which licens'd either Peace or Force,
To hinder the unjust Divorce.
Yet still the Nuns his Right debar'd,
Standing upon their holy Guard.
Ill-counsell'd Women, do you know
Whom you resist, or what you do?
Is not this he whose Offspring fierce
Shall fight through all the Universe;
And with successive Valour try
France, Poland, either Germany;
Till one, as long since prophecy'd,
His Horse through conquer'd Br...Read More
by Shakespeare, William
...ns draws up her breath
And sighing it again, exclaims on Death.
"Hard-favour'd tyrant, ugly, meagre, lean,
Hateful divorce of love,"--thus chides she Death,--
"Grim-grinning ghost, earth's worm, what dost thou mean
To stifle beauty and to steal his breath,
Who when he liv'd, his breath and beauty set
Gloss on the rose, smell to the violet?
"If he be dead,--O no, it cannot be,
Seeing his beauty, thou shouldst strike at it:--
O yes, it may; thou hast no eyes to see,
But h...Read More
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