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Famous Stillborn Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Cohen, Leonard
...hat you can just let it go by. 
If I, if I have been untrue 
I hope you know it was never to you. 
Like a baby, stillborn, 
like a beast with his horn 
I have torn everyone who reached out for me. 
But I swear by this song 
and by all that I have done wrong 
I will make it all up to thee. 
I saw a beggar leaning on his wooden crutch, 
he said to me, "You must not ask for so much." 
And a pretty woman leaning in her darkened door, 
she cried to me, "Hey, wh...Read More

by Gregory, Rg
...n't stop being stirred
to leap behind and forward in our schemes
tasting the larger landscapes of each word
wishing the stillborn pond break into streams
to sweep us to the oceans of our dreams
in our small minds the universe is waltzing.....
takes pain to sauerkraut such schmaltzing

the patch we're stuck in's our best endeavour
(lacquered in the way our talents choose)
in a phoney war we're gunned to being clever
its medals leave an unrelenting bruise
ev...Read More

by Whitman, Walt and women be mock’d with bodies and mock’d with Souls! 
Let the love that waits in them, wait! let it die, or pass stillborn to other spheres! 
Let the sympathy that waits in every man, wait! or let it also pass, a dwarf, to other

Let contradictions prevail! let one thing contradict another! and let one line of my poems
 contradict another!
Let the people sprawl with yearning, aimless hands! let their tongues be broken! let their
 be discouraged! let non...Read More

by Graham, Jorie
...eeps opening
 from eternity

to privacy, quickening.
 Inside, at the heart,
is tragedy, the present moment
 forever stillborn,
but going in, each breath
 is a button

coming undone, something terribly
finding all of the stops....Read More

by Plath, Sylvia
...These poems do not live: it's a sad diagnosis.
They grew their toes and fingers well enough,
Their little foreheads bulged with concentration.
If they missed out on walking about like people
It wasn't for any lack of mother-love.

O I cannot explain what happened to them!
They are proper in shape and number and every part.
They sit so nicel...Read More

by Graves, Robert

Must winds that cut like blades of steel
And sunsets swimming in Volnay, 
The holiest, cruellest pains I feel, 
Die stillborn, because old men squeal 
For something new: “Write something new: 
We’ve read this poem—that one too,
And twelve more like ’em yesterday”? 

No, no! my chicken, I shall scrawl 
Just what I fancy as I strike it, 
Fairies and Fusiliers, and all 
Old broken knock-kneed thought will crawl
Across my verse in the classic way. 
And, sir, be careful wh...Read More

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