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Famous Lion Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Smart, Christopher
...could defy 
Satan, and all his pow'rs that lie 
 In sempiternal night; 
And hell, and horror, and despair 
Were as the lion and the bear 
 To his undaunted might. 

Constant—in love to God, THE TRUTH, 
Age, manhood, infancy, and youth— 
 To Jonathan his friend 
Constant, beyond the verge of death; 
And Zilba, and Mephibosheth, 
 His endless fame attend. 

Pleasant—various as the year; 
Man, soul, and angel, without peer, 
 Priest, champion, sage, and boy; ...Read More

by Keats, John
...s' toil:
With toying oars and silken sails they glide,
 Nor care for wind and tide.

"Mounted on panthers' furs and lions' manes,
From rear to van they scour about the plains;
A three days' journey in a moment done:
And always, at the rising of the sun,
About the wilds they hunt with spear and horn,
 On spleenful unicorn.

"I saw Osirian Egypt kneel adown
 Before the vine-wreath crown!
I saw parch'd Abyssinia rouse and sing
 To the silver cymbals' ring!
I saw the whel...Read More

by Hugo, Victor
...heir eight pinnacles the gorgons bay, 
 And scattered monsters, in their stony way, 
 Are growling heard; the rampart lions gnaw 
 The misty air and slush with granite maw, 
 The sleet upon the griffins spits, and all 
 The Saurian monsters, answering to the squall, 
 Flap wings; while through the broken ceiling fall 
 Torrents of rain upon the forms beneath, 
 Dragons and snak'd Medusas gnashing teeth 
 In the dismantled rooms. Like armored knight 
 The granite Cas...Read More

by Keats, John
...ven of my rest,
This cradle of my glory, this soft clime,
This calm luxuriance of blissful light,
These crystalline pavilions, and pure fanes,
Of all my lucent empire? It is left
Deserted, void, nor any haunt of mine.
The blaze, the splendor, and the symmetry,
I cannot see but darkness, death, and darkness.
Even here, into my centre of repose,
The shady visions come to domineer,
Insult, and blind, and stifle up my pomp.---
Fall!---No, by Tellus and her briny robes...Read More

by Alighieri, Dante
...e hope was none 
 When down the slope there came with lifted head 
 And back-blown mane and caverned mouth and red, 
 A lion, roaring, all the air ashake 
 That heard his hunger. Upward flight to take 
 No heart was mine, for where the further way 
 Mine anxious eyes explored, a she-wolf lay, 
 That licked lean flanks, and waited. Such was she 
 In aspect ruthless that I quaked to see, 
 And where she lay among her bones had brought 
 So many to grief before, that all...Read More

by Wordsworth, William
...;Without me my sweet babe would die.   Then do not fear, my boy! for thee  Bold as a lion I will be;  And I will always be thy guide,  Through hollow snows and rivers wide.  I'll build an Indian bower; I know  The leaves that make the softest bed:  And if from me thou wilt not go.  But still be true 'till I am dead,  My pretty thing! then thou s...Read More

by Milton, John
...king played 
All beasts of the earth, since wild, and of all chase 
In wood or wilderness, forest or den; 
Sporting the lion ramped, and in his paw 
Dandled the kid; bears, tigers, ounces, pards, 
Gambolled before them; the unwieldy elephant, 
To make them mirth, used all his might, and wreathed 
His?kithetmroboscis; close the serpent sly, 
Insinuating, wove with Gordian twine 
His braided train, and of his fatal guile 
Gave proof unheeded; others on the grass 
Couched, and n...Read More

by Wilde, Oscar
...ry, the Lord of war,
Gaston de Foix: for some untimely star
Led him against thy city, and he fell,
As falls some forest-lion fighting well.
Taken from life while life and love were new,
He lies beneath God's seamless veil of blue;
Tall lance-like reeds wave sadly o'er his head,
And oleanders bloom to deeper red,
Where his bright youth flowed crimson on the ground.

Look farther north unto that broken mound, -
There, prisoned now within a lordly tomb
Raised by a daught...Read More

by Milton, John Renown'd,
Irresistible Samson? whom unarm'd
No strength of man, or fiercest wild beast could withstand;
Who tore the Lion, as the Lion tears the Kid,
Ran on embattelld Armies clad in Iron,
And weaponless himself, 
Made Arms ridiculous, useless the forgery
Of brazen shield and spear, the hammer'd Cuirass,
Chalybean temper'd steel, and frock of mail
Adamantean Proof;
But safest he who stood aloof,
When insupportably his foot advanc't,
In scorn of thir proud arms and warlike ...Read More

by Chesterton, G K

O go you onward; where you are
Shall honour and laughter be,
Past purpled forest and pearled foam,
God's winged pavilion free to roam,
Your face, that is a wandering home,
A flying home for me.

Ride through the silent earthquake lands,
Wide as a waste is wide,
Across these days like deserts, when
Pride and a little scratching pen
Have dried and split the hearts of men,
Heart of the heroes, ride.

Up through an empty house of stars,
Being what heart you are,
Up th...Read More

by Byron, George (Lord)> 
Old Giaffir gazed upon his son 
And started; for within his eye 
He read how much his wrath had done; 
He saw rebellion there begun: 
"Come hither, boy — what, no reply? 
I mark thee — and I know thee too; 
But there be deeds thou dar'st not do: 
But if thy beard had manlier length, 
And if thy hand had skill and strength, 
I'd joy to see thee break a lance, 
Albeit against my own perchance." 

As sneeringly these accents fell, 
On Selim's eye he fiercely gazed: 
Tha...Read More

by Masefield, John
...nd all 
Said, "Well done you" or "Good old Saul." 
"Saul is a wonder and a fly 'un, 
What'll you have, Saul, at the Lion?" 
With merry oaths they helped me down 
The stony wood path to the town. 

The moonlight shone on Cabbage Walk, 
It made the limestone look like chalk. 
It was too late for any people, 
Twelve struck as we went by the steeple. 
A dog barked, and an owl was calling, 
The squire's brook was still a-falling, 
The carved heads on the church loo...Read More

by Bradstreet, Anne
...s nimble as the Roe,
5.78 Now stiff and numb, can hardly creep or go.
5.79 My heart sometimes as fierce, as Lion bold,
5.80 Now trembling, and fearful, sad, and cold.
5.81 My golden Bowl and silver Cord, e're long,
5.82 Shall both be broke, by wracking death so strong.
5.83 I then shall go whence I shall come no more.
5.84 Sons, Nephews, leave, my death for to deplore.
5.85 In pleasures, and in labours, I have found
5.86...Read More

by Service, Robert William
...e Brown sat in the sick man's room, still as a stone in his despair;
Smith bent on him his eyes of doom, shook back his lion mane of hair;
Said: "Is there one in my chosen line, writer of forthright tales my peer?
Look in that little desk of mine; there is a package, bring it here.
Story of stories, gem of all; essence and triumph, key and clue;
Tale of a loving woman's fall; soul swept hell-ward, and God! it's true.
I was the man -- Oh, yes, I've paid, paid with migh...Read More

by Tennyson, Alfred Lord
...razy walls, 
Thicker than drops from thunder, showers of flowers 
Fell as we past; and men and boys astride 
On wyvern, lion, dragon, griffin, swan, 
At all the corners, named us each by name, 
Calling, "God speed!" but in the ways below 
The knights and ladies wept, and rich and poor 
Wept, and the King himself could hardly speak 
For grief, and all in middle street the Queen, 
Who rode by Lancelot, wailed and shrieked aloud, 
"This madness has come on us for our sins." ...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey

This Arcite then, with full dispiteous* heart, *wrathful
When he him knew, and had his tale heard,
As fierce as lion pulled out a swerd,
And saide thus; "By God that sitt'th above,
*N'ere it* that thou art sick, and wood for love, *were it not*
And eke that thou no weap'n hast in this place,
Thou should'st never out of this grove pace,
That thou ne shouldest dien of mine hand.
For I defy the surety and the band,
Which that thou sayest I have made to thee.
What...Read More

by Scott, Sir Walter
     Slave of thy will, this chieftain dread,
     Yet, O loved maid, thy mirth refrain!
     Thy hand is on a lion's mane.'—

     Minstrel,' the maid replied, and high
     Her father's soul glanced from her eye,
     'My debts to Roderick's house I know:
     All that a mother could bestow
     To Lady Margaret's care I owe,
     Since first an orphan in the wild
     She sorrowed o'er her sister's child;
     To her brave chieftain son, from ...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...hraldom and penance, I perish*
And to be under mannes governance."

I trow at Troy when Pyrrhus brake the wall,
Or Ilion burnt, or Thebes the city,
Nor at Rome for the harm through Hannibal,
That Romans hath y-vanquish'd times three,
Was heard such tender weeping for pity,
As in the chamber was for her parting;
But forth she must, whether she weep or sing.

O firste moving cruel Firmament,
With thy diurnal sway that crowdest* aye, *pushest together, drivest
And hur...Read More

by Blake, William
...into barren climes.

Now the sneaking serpent walks
In mild humility.
And the just man rages in the wilds
Where lions roam.

Rintrah roars & shakes his fires in the burdend air;
Hungry clouds swag on the deep.


As a new heaven is begun, and it is now thirty-three years
since its advent: the Eternal Hell revives. And lo! Swedenborg is
the Angel sitting at the tomb; his writings are the linen clothes
fold...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey,
That they must give it up, as for the best
Or elles had we never been in rest.
For, though he looked as a wood* lion, *furious
Yet should he fail of his conclusion.
Then would I say, "Now, goode lefe* tak keep** *dear **heed
How meekly looketh Wilken oure sheep!
Come near, my spouse, and let me ba* thy cheek *kiss 18
Ye shoulde be all patient and meek,
And have a *sweet y-spiced* conscience, *tender, nice*
Since ye so preach of Jobe's patience.
Suffer alway, s...Read More

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