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Famous Proper Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Teasdale, Sara
...nk too little, shadows
That hurry, gesturing along a wall,
Haunting or gay -- and yet they all grow real
And take their proper size here in my heart
When you have seen them. . . . There's the Plaza now,
A lake of light! To-night it almost seems
That all the lights are gathered in your eyes,
Drawn somehow toward you. See the open park
Lying below us with a million lamps
Scattered in wise disorder like the stars.
We look down on them as God must look dow...Read More

by Pope, Alexander
...nd theme explain the Meaning quite away

You then whose Judgment the right Course wou'd steer,
Know well each ANCIENT's proper Character,
His Fable, Subject, Scope in ev'ry Page,
Religion, Country, Genius of his Age:
Without all these at once before your Eyes,
Cavil you may, but never Criticize.
Be Homer's Works your Study, and Delight,
Read them by Day, and meditate by Night,
Thence form your Judgment, thence your Maxims bring,
And trace the Muses upward to their Spring;...Read More

by Robinson, Edwin Arlington
...leader to be free, 
And not enough a hero to be jealous. 
Having eyes and ears, I knew that I was envied, 
And as a proper sort of compensation 
Had envy of my own for two or three—
But never felt, and surely never gave, 
The wound of any more malevolence 
Than decent youth, defeated for a day, 
May take to bed with him and kill with sleep. 
So, and so far, my days were going well,
And would have gone so, but for the black tiger 
That many of us fancy is in waiting, 
...Read More

by Larkin, Philip
...e surprising
A hunger in himself to be more serious 
And gravitating with it to this ground 
Which he once heard was proper to grow wise in 
If only that so many dead lie round.

1955...Read More

by Betjeman, John
...o waste,
But how annoying when one finds
That other mice with pagan minds
Come into church my food to share
Who have no proper business there.
Two field mice who have no desire
To be baptized, invade the choir.
A large and most unfriendly rat
Comes in to see what we are at.
He says he thinks there is no God
And yet he comes ... it's rather odd.
This year he stole a sheaf of wheat
(It screened our special preacher's seat),
And prosperous mice from f...Read More

by Keats, John
Nor with aught else can our souls interknit
So wingedly: when we combine therewith,
Life's self is nourish'd by its proper pith,
And we are nurtured like a pelican brood.
Aye, so delicious is the unsating food,
That men, who might have tower'd in the van
Of all the congregated world, to fan
And winnow from the coming step of time
All chaff of custom, wipe away all slime
Left by men-slugs and human serpentry,
Have been content to let occasion die,
Whilst they did sleep...Read More

by Keats, John
Of new-born woe it feels more inly smart:
And in these regions many a venom'd dart
At random flies; they are the proper home
Of every ill: the man is yet to come
Who hath not journeyed in this native hell.
But few have ever felt how calm and well
Sleep may be had in that deep den of all.
There anguish does not sting; nor pleasure pall:
Woe-hurricanes beat ever at the gate,
Yet all is still within and desolate.
Beset with painful gusts, within ye hear
No sou...Read More

by Pope, Alexander
...all creatures if he call, 
Say what their use, had he the pow'rs of all? 
Nature to these, without profusion kind, 
The proper organs, proper pow'rs assign'd; 
Each seeming want compensated of course, 
Here with degrees of swiftness, there of force; 
All in exact proportion to the state; 
Nothing to add, and nothing to abate. 
Each beast, each insect, happy in its own; 
Is Heav'n unkind to Man, and Man alone? 
Shall he alone, whom rational we call, 
Be pleas'd with nothin...Read More

by Hugo, Victor school but take a scholar's place. 
 Highness, you are a fairy bright, whose hand 
 For sceptre vile gave up your proper wand." 
 Fair Mahaud mused—then said, "Be silent now; 
 You seem to watch me; little 'tis I know, 
 Only that from Bohemia Joss doth come, 
 And that in Poland Zeno hath his home. 
 But you amuse me; I am rich, you poor— 
 What boon shall I confer and make secure? 
 What gift? ask of me, poets, what you will 
 And I will grant it—promise to fu...Read More

by Carroll, Lewis
...le Birds are teaching
Tigresses to smile,
Innocent of guile:
Smile, I say, not smirkle -
Mouth a semicircle,
That's the proper style!

Little Birds are sleeping
All among the pins,
Where the loser wins:
Where, I say, he sneezes
When and how he pleases -
So the Tale begins.

Little Birds are writing
Interesting books,
To be read by cooks:
Read, I say, not roasted -
Letterpress, when toasted,
Loses its good looks.

Little Birds are playing
Bagpipes on the shore,
Where t...Read More

by Hood, Thomas
...No sun - no moon! 
No morn - no noon - 
No dawn - no dusk - no proper time of day. 
No warmth, no cheerfulness, no healthful ease, 
No comfortable feel in any member - 
No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees, 
No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds! - 
November!...Read More

by Milton, John
Bright temple, to Egyptian Thebes he flies. 
At once on the eastern cliff of Paradise 
He lights, and to his proper shape returns 
A Seraph winged: Six wings he wore, to shade 
His lineaments divine; the pair that clad 
Each shoulder broad, came mantling o'er his breast 
With regal ornament; the middle pair 
Girt like a starry zone his waist, and round 
Skirted his loins and thighs with downy gold 
And colours dipt in Heaven; the third his feet 
Shadowed from eithe...Read More

by Lowell, Amy
Was far from pleasant. Still the stranger stayed,
And Lotta in her currants watched, dismayed.
He seemed a proper fellow standing there
In the bright moonshine. His cocked hat was laced
With silver, and he wore his own brown hair
Tied, but unpowdered. His whole bearing graced
A fine cloth coat, and ruffled shirt, and chased
Sword-hilt. Charlotta looked, but her position
Was hardly easy. When would his volition
Suggest his walking on? And then that...Read More

by Browning, Robert
...the Heroic Time,
And only in wild nooks like ours
Could you taste of it yet as in its prime,
And see true castles, with proper towers,
Young-hearted women, old-minded men,
And manners now as manners were then.
So, all that the old Dukes had been, without knowing it,
This Duke would fain know he was, without being it;
'Twas not for the joy's self, but the joy of his showing it,
Nor for the pride's self, but the pride of our seeing it,
He revived all usages thoroughly worn-...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey carven on his shoes 
In hosen red he went full fetisly*. *daintily, neatly
Y-clad he was full small and properly,
All in a kirtle* of a light waget*; *girdle **sky blue
Full fair and thicke be the pointes set,
And thereupon he had a gay surplice,
As white as is the blossom on the rise*. *twig 
A merry child he was, so God me save;
Well could he letten blood, and clip, and shave,
And make a charter of land, and a quittance.
In twenty manners could h...Read More

by Pope, Alexander
...linda flew,
Umbriel, a dusky melancholy Spright,
As ever sully'd the fair face of Light,
Down to the Central Earth, his proper Scene,
Repairs to search the gloomy Cave of Spleen.

Swift on his sooty Pinions flitts the Gnome,
And in a Vapour reach'd the dismal Dome.
No cheerful Breeze this sullen Region knows,
The dreaded East is all the Wind that blows.
Here, in a Grotto, sheltred close from Air,
And screen'd in Shades from Day's detested Glare,
She sighs for ever...Read More

by Petrarch, Francesco>'Twas this, which, as a rein the generous horse,Slack'd your hot haste, and shaped your proper course.Often, while Love my struggling heart consumed,Has anger tinged my cheek, my eyes illumed,For Love in me could reason ne'er subdue;But ever if I saw you sorrow-spent,Instant my fondest looks on you were bent,Read More

by Byron, George (Lord)
...person of the Deity is carefully withheld from sight, which is more than can be said for the Laureate, who hath thought proper to make him talk, not 'like a school-divine,' but like the unscholarlike Mr. Southey. The whole action passes on the outside of heaven; and Chaucer's 'Wife of Bath,' Pulci's 'Morgante Maggiore,' Swift's 'Tale of a Tub,' and the other
works above referred to, are cases in point of the freedom with which saints, &c. may be permitted to conve...Read More

by Eliot, T S (Thomas Stearns)
...nd nearly died of young George.) 
The chemist said it would be alright, but I've never been the same.
You are a proper fool, I said.
Well, if Albert won't leave you alone, there it is, I said,
What you get married for if you don't want children?
Well, that Sunday Albert was home, they had a hot gammon,
And they asked me in to dinner, to get the beauty of it hot -
Goonight Bill. Goonight...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...; 7
Some are of tree, and do their lord service.
God calleth folk to him in sundry wise,
And each one hath of God a proper gift,
Some this, some that, as liketh him to shift.* *appoint, distribute
Virginity is great perfection,
And continence eke with devotion:
But Christ, that of perfection is the well,* *fountain
Bade not every wight he should go sell
All that he had, and give it to the poor,
And in such wise follow him and his lore:* *doctrine
He spake to them that...Read More

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