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Famous Sheet Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Mayakovsky, Vladimir
...It is today¡¯s brazen-lipped Zarathustra 
who preaches, 
dashing about and groaning! 
our face like a crumpled sheet, 
our lips pendulant like a chandelier; 
the convicts of the City Leprous, 
where gold and filth spawned leper¡¯s sores, 
we are purer than the azure of Venice, 
washed by both the sea and the sun! 

I spit on the fact 
that neither Homer nor Ovid 
invented characters like us, 
pock-marked with soot. 
I know 
the sun would dim, on...Read more of this...

by Plath, Sylvia

A woman is dragging her shadow in a circle
About a bald hospital saucer.
It resembles the moon, or a sheet of blank paper
And appears to have suffered a sort of private blitzkrieg.
She lives quietly

With no attachments, like a foetus in a bottle,
The obsolete house, the sea, flattened to a picture
She has one too many dimensions to enter.
Grief and anger, exorcised,
Leave her alone now.

The future is a grey seagull
Tattling in its cat-voice of...Read more of this...

by Frost, Robert
...ould feel if I wasn't all gone wrong. 
You take the lake. I look and look at it. 
I see it's a fair, pretty sheet of water. 
I stand and make myself repeat out loud 
The advantages it has, so long and narrow, 
Like a deep piece of some old running river 
Cut short off at both ends. It lies five miles 
Straight away through the mountain notch 
From the sink window where I wash the plates, 
And all our storms come up toward the house, 
Drawing the slow waves...Read more of this...

by Blake, William
Licensed, build that nation's fate.
The harlot's cry from street to street
Shall weave old England's winding sheet.
The winner's shout, the loser's curse,
Dance before dead England's hearse.
Every night and every morn
Some to misery are born.
Every morn and every night
Some are born to sweet delight.
Some are born to sweet delight,
Some are born to endless night.
We are led to believe a lie
When we see not through the eye
Which was born in a nig...Read more of this...

by Wilde, Oscar
...le quay,
And called his mates aboard, and took his seat
On the high poop, and pushed from land, and loosed the dripping

And steered across the bay, and when nine suns
Passed down the long and laddered way of gold,
And nine pale moons had breathed their orisons
To the chaste stars their confessors, or told
Their dearest secret to the downy moth
That will not fly at noonday, through the foam and surging froth

Came a great owl with yellow sulphurous eyes
And lit upon th...Read more of this...

by Cisneros, Sandra
...If you are a poet, you will see clearly that there is a cloud floating in this sheet of paper. 
-Thich Nhat Hanh 

Before you became a cloud, you were an ocean, roiled and
murmuring like a mouth. You were the shadows of a cloud cross-
ing over a field of tulips. You were the tears of a man who cried
into a plaid handkerchief. You were the sky without a hat. Your
heart puffed and flowered like sheets dryi...Read more of this...

by Graves, Robert
...y little time
And poke it, 
And choke it, 
Change it, arrange it, 
Straight-lace it, deface it, 
Pleat it with pleats, 
Sheet it with sheets 
Of empty conceits, 
And chop and chew, 
And hack and hew, 
And weld it into a uniform stanza,
And evolve a neat, 
Complacent, complete, 
Academic extravaganza!...Read more of this...

by Bronte, Charlotte
...then no cloud of grief or crime 
Had cursed it with a settled gloom; 

I had not seen death's image laid 
In shroud and sheet, on yonder bed. 
Before she married, she was blest­ 
Blest in her youth, blest in her worth; 
Her mind was calm, its sunny rest 
Shone in her eyes more clear than mirth. 

And when attired in rich array, 
Light, lustrous hair about her brow, 
She yonder sat­a kind of day 
Lit up­what seems so gloomy now. 
These grim oak walls, even then wer...Read more of this...

by Kaur, Rupi
...god must have kneaded you and i
from the same dough
rolled us out as one on the baking sheet
must have suddenly realized
how unfair it was
to put that much magic in one person
and sadly split that dough in two
how else is it that
when i look in the mirror
i am looking at you
when you breathe
my own lungs fill with air
that we just met but we
have known each other our whole lives
if we were not made as one to begin with...Read more of this...

by Sandburg, Carl
When the coal boats plow by on the river—
The hunched shoulders of the grain elevators—
The flame sprockets of the sheet steel mills
And the men in the rolling mills with their shirts off
Playing their flesh arms against the twisting wrists of steel:
 what brothers these
 in the dark
 of a thousand years?. . .
A headlight searches a snowstorm.
A funnel of white light shoots from over the pilot of the Pioneer Limited crossing Wisconsin.

In the morning...Read more of this...

by Whitman, Walt
...e one we
 have conquer’d;
The captain on the quarter-deck coldly giving his orders through a countenance
 white as a sheet; 
Near by, the corpse of the child that serv’d in the cabin; 
The dead face of an old salt with long white hair and carefully curl’d
The flames, spite of all that can be done, flickering aloft and below; 
The husky voices of the two or three officers yet fit for duty;
Formless stacks of bodies, and bodies by themselves—dabs of flesh u...Read more of this...

by Wilde, Oscar
...w men can claim:
Deep down below a prison-yard,
Naked for greater shame,
He lies, with fetters on each foot,
Wrapt in a sheet of flame!

And all the while the burning lime
Eats flesh and bone away,
It eats the brittle bone by night,
And the soft flesh by day,
It eats the flesh and bone by turns,
But it eats the heart alway.

For three long years they will not sow
Or root or seedling there:
For three long years the unblessed spot
Will sterile be and bare,
And look upon th...Read more of this...

by Lowell, Amy
...ith its hue,
Changeable, iridescent, shuttlecocks
Of shades and lustres always darting through
Its level, superimposing sheet of blue,
Charlotta did not hear footsteps approaching.
She started at the words: "Am I encroaching?"
"Oh, Heinrich, how you frightened me! I 
We were to meet at three, is it quite that?"
"No, it is not," he answered, "but I've caught
The trick of missing you. One thing is flat,
I cannot go on this way. Life is what
Might best be con...Read more of this...

by Masefield, John
Lest Police Inspector Drew should challenge. 
But 'Spector Drew was sleeping sweet, 
His head upon a charges sheet, 
Under the gas jet flaring full, 
Snorting and snoring like a bull, 
His bull cheeks puffed, his bull lips plowing, 
His ugly yellow front teeth showing. 
Just as we peeped we saw him fumble 
And scratch his head, and shift, and mumble. 
Down in the lane so thick and dark 
The tan-yards stank of bitter bark, 
The curate's pigeons gave a flutte...Read more of this...

by Aiken, Conrad> . rain . . . we are buried in rain,
It will rain forever, the swift wheels hiss through water,
Pale sheets of water gleam in the windy street.
The pealing of bells is lost in a drive of rain-drops.
Remote and hurried the great bells beat.

'I am the one whom life so shrewdly betrayed,
Misfortune dogs me, it always hunted me down.
And to-day the woman I love lies dead.
I gave her roses, a ring with opals;
These hands have touched her hea...Read more of this...

by Scott, Sir Walter lent their aid;
     And thus an airy point he won,
     Where, gleaming with the setting sun,
     One burnished sheet of living gold,
     Loch Katrine lay beneath him rolled,
     In all her length far winding lay,
     With promontory, creek, and bay,
     And islands that, empurpled bright,
     Floated amid the livelier light,
     And mountains that like giants stand
     To sentinel enchanted land.
     High on the south, huge Benvenue
     Down to the ...Read more of this...

by Bukowski, Charles
...nd lips glistening, her glistening... She displayed her
body calmly, as a good thing. She got under the sheet. 
"Come on, lover man." 
I got in. She kissed with abandon but without haste. I let my hands run over her body,
through her hair. I mounted. It was hot, and tight. I began to stroke slowly, wanting to
make it last. Her eyes looked directly into mine. 
"What's your name?" I asked. 
"What the hell difference does i...Read more of this...

by Walcott, Derek
...ry reflection;
I knew when dark-haired evening put on
her bright silk at sunset, and, folding the sea,
sidled under the sheet with her starry laugh,
that there'd be no rest, there'd be no forgetting.
Is like telling mourners round the graveside
about resurrection, they want the dead back,
so I smile to myself as the bow rope untied
and the Flight swing seaward:"Is no use repeating
that the sea have more fish. I ain't want her
dressed in the sexless light of a seraph,
...Read more of this...

by Eliot, T S (Thomas Stearns)
... Cf. Webster, The White Devil, v. vi:
. . they'll remarry
 Ere the worm pierce your winding-sheet, ere the spider
 Make a thin curtain for your epitaphs."
412. Cf. Inferno, xxxiii. 46:
 "ed io sentii
chiavar l'uscio di sotto
 all'orribile torre."
Also F. H. Bradley, Appearance and Reality, p. 346:
"My external sensations are no less private to myself than are my
thoughts or my feelings. In either case my experien...Read more of this...

by Brautigan, Richard
...l in bed. He looked up at me from underneath a tattered

revolution of old blankets. He had never slept under a sheet

in his life.

"Did you bring the nickel you promised?" he asked.

"Yeah, " I said. "It's here in my pocket. "

"Good. "

 He hopped out of bed and he was already dressed. He had

told me once that he never took off his clothes when he went

to bed.

 "Why bother?" he had said. "You're only going to get up,

anyway. ...Read more of this...

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