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Famous Percentage Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Brautigan, Richard
...completely over, for it took a while to get

trout fishing in America off the clothes of the first-graders.

A fair percentage of trout fishing in America was gone the

next day. The mothers did this by simply putting clean

clothes on their children, but there were a lot of kids whose

mothers just tried to wipe it off and then sent them back to

school the next day with the same clothes on, but you could

still see "Trout fishing in America" faintly outlined on thei...Read More

by Brautigan, Richard
...rden and deported snakes when-

 ever I found them on her place. She told me to kill them, but

 I couldn't see any percentage in wasting a gartersnake. But

 I had to get rid of the things because she always promisedme

 she'd have a heart attack if she ever stepped on one of them.

 So I'd catch them and deport them to a yard across the

 street, where nine old ladies probably had heart attacks and

 died from finding those snakes in their toothbrushes. Fort...Read More

by Levine, Philip
...for my eyes brim 
With tears I had forgotten. Death is not 
For these car salesmen whose only dream 

Is of a small percentage of the take. 
Oh my eternal smilers, weep for death 
Whose harvest withers with your aged aches 
And cannot make the grave for lack of breath. 


Did you wet? Oh no, he had not wet. 
How could he say it, it was hard to say 
Because he did not understand it yet. 
It had to do, maybe, with being away, 

With being here where not...Read More

by Masters, Edgar Lee
...can close the house.
And if you lose, you can squeal as you will;
You'll not get back your money.
He makes the percentage hard to conquer;
He stacks the cards to catch your weakness
And not to meet your strength.
And he gives you seventy years to play:
For if you cannot win in seventy
You cannot win at all.
So, if you lose, get out of the room --
Get out of the room when your time is up.
It's mean to sit and fumble the cards,
And curse your losses, leaden...Read More

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