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John Berryman Poems

A collection of select John Berryman famous poems that were written by John Berryman or written about the poet by other famous poets. PoetrySoup is a comprehensive educational resource of the greatest poems and poets on history.

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by Berryman, John
 As a kid I believed in democracy: I
'saw no alternative'—teaching at The Big Place I ah
put it in practice:
we'd time for one long novel: to a vote—
Gone with the...Read More



by Berryman, John
 Fresh-shaven, past months & a picture in New York
of Beard Two, I did have Three took off. Well. .
Shadow & act, shadow & act,
Better get white or you' get...Read More

by Berryman, John
 A hemorrhage of his left ear of Good Friday—
so help me Jesus—then made funny too
the other, further one.
There must have been a bit. Sheets scrubbed away 
soon all but...Read More

by Berryman, John
 28 July

Calmly, while sat up friendlies & made noise
delight fuller than he can ready sing
or studiously say,
on hearing that the year had swung to pause
and culminated in an abundant...Read More



by Berryman, John
 or Amy Vladeck or Riva Freifeld

That isna Henry limping. That's a hobble
clapped on mere Henry by the most high GOD
for the freedom of Henry's soul.
—The body's foul, cried god,...Read More

by Berryman, John
 Foes I sniff, when I have less to shout
or murmur. Pals alone enormous sounds
downward & up bring real.
Loss, deaths, terror. Over & out,
beloved: thanks for cabbage on my wounds:
I'll...Read More

by Berryman, John
 Henry in Ireland to Bill underground:
Rest well, who worked so hard, who made a good sound
constantly, for so many years:
your high-jinks delighted the continents & our ears:
you had so...Read More

by Berryman, John
 Thin as a sheet his mother came to him
during the screaming evenings after he did it,
touched F.J.'s dead hand.
The parlour was dark, he was the first pall-bearer in,
he gave...Read More



by Berryman, John
 Henry Hankovitch, con guítar,
did a short Zen pray,
on his tatami in a relaxed lotos
fixin his mind on nuffin, rose-blue breasts,
and gave his parnel one French kiss;
enslaving himself he withdrew...Read More

by Berryman, John
 Whence flew the litter whereon he was laid?
Of what heroic stuff was warlock Henry made?
and questions of that sort
perplexed the bulging cosmos, O in short
was sandalwood in good supply...Read More

by Berryman, John
 'All virtues enter into this world:')
A Buddhist, doused in the street, serenely burned.
The Secretary of State for War,
winking it over, screwed a redhaired whore.
Monsignor Capovilla mourned. What a week.
A...Read More

by Berryman, John
 Henry's pelt was put on sundry walls
where it did much resemble Henry and
them persons was delighted.
Especially his long & glowing tail
by all them was admired, and visitors.
They whistled: This...Read More

by Berryman, John
 A Thurn

Among them marble where the man may lie
lie chieftains grand in final phase, or pause,
'O rare Ben Jonson',
dictator too, & the thinky other Johnson,
dictator too, backhanders down of...Read More

by Berryman, John
 Come touch me baby in his waking dream
disordered Henry murmured. I'll read you Hegel
and that will hurt your mind
I can't remember when you were unkind
but I will clear that...Read More

by Berryman, John
 I am the little man who smokes & smokes.
I am the girl who does know better but.
I am the king of the pool.
I am so wise I had my...Read More