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Famous Wasted Poems by Famous Poets

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

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by Shelley, Percy Bysshe
...g in solitude. 
Strangers have wept to hear his passionate notes,
And virgins, as unknown he passed, have pined
And wasted for fond love of his wild eyes.
The fire of those soft orbs has ceased to burn,
And Silence, too enamoured of that voice,
Locks its mute music in her rugged cell.

By solemn vision and bright silver dream
His infancy was nurtured. Every sight
And sound from the vast earth and ambient air
Sent to his heart its choicest impulses. 
The fo...Read More

by Yeats, William Butler
...o such a pitch of passion wrought
Nothing could bring him, when his lady died,
Anodyne for his love.
Words were but wasted breath;
One dear hope had he:
The inclemency
Of that or the next winter would be death.

Two thoughts were so mixed up I could not tell
Whether of her or God he thought the most,
But think that his mind's eye,
When upward turned, on one sole image fell;
And that a slight companionable ghost,
Wild with divinity,
Had so lit up the whole
Immense mira...Read More

by Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
...riest, her friend and father-confessor,
Said, with a smile, "O daughter! thy God thus speaketh within thee!
Talk not of wasted affection, affection never was wasted;
If it enrich not the heart of another, its waters, returning
Back to their springs, like the rain, shall fill them full of refreshment;
That which the fountain sends forth returns again to the fountain.
Patience; accomplish thy labor; accomplish thy work of affection!
Sorrow and silence are strong, and patien...Read More

by Hugo, Victor
 From red horizon dwelt in abject fear, 
 Mastered by them; their figures darkly grand 
 Had ruddy reflex from the wasted land, 
 And fires, and towns they sacked. Besides the one, 
 Like David, poet was, the other shone 
 As fine musician—rumor spread their fame, 
 Declaring them divine, until each name 
 In Italy's fine sonnets met with praise. 
 The ancient hierarch in those old days 
 Had custom strange, a now forgotten thing, 
 It was a European plan that Ki...Read More

by Eliot, T S (Thomas Stearns)
...that, we call this Friday good.


So here I am, in the middle way, having had twenty years—
Twenty years largely wasted, the years of l'entre deux guerres
Trying to use words, and every attempt
Is a wholly new start, and a different kind of failure
Because one has only learnt to get the better of words
For the thing one no longer has to say, or the way in which
One is no longer disposed to say it. And so each venture
Is a new beginning, a raid on the inarticulate
W...Read More

by Byron, George (Lord)
...tripp'd the truth, 
And troubled manhood follow'd baffled youth; 
With thought of years in phantom chase misspent, 
And wasted powers for better purpose lent; 
And fiery passions that had pour'd their wrath 
In hurried desolation o'er his path, 
And left the better feelings all at strife 
In wild reflection o'er his stormy life; 
But haughty still, and loth himself to blame, 
He call'd on Nature's self to share the shame, 
And charged all faults upon the fleshly form 
She gav...Read More

by Frost, Robert rebuke her teacher with it next day,
And give the teacher a scare as from her father.
Anything further had been wasted on her,
Or so he tried to think to avoid blame.
She would forget it. She all but forgot it.
What he sowed with her slept so long a sleep,
And came so near death in the dark of years,
That when it woke and came to life again
The flower was different from the parent seed.
It carne back vaguely at the glass one day,
As she stood saying he...Read More

by Bronte, Charlotte
...rom her home. 

And silent still, she straight assembled 
The wrecks of strength her soul retained; 
For though the wasted body trembled, 
The unconquered mind, to quail, disdained. 

She crossed the sea­now lone she wanders 
By Seine's, or Rhine's, or Arno's flow; 
Fain would I know if distance renders 
Relief or comfort to her woe. 

Fain would I know if, henceforth, ever, 
These eyes shall read in hers again, 
That light of love which faded never, 
Though dimme...Read More

by Milton, John who, at the forge 
Labouring, two massy clods of iron and brass 
Had melted, (whether found where casual fire 
Had wasted woods on mountain or in vale, 
Down to the veins of earth; thence gliding hot 
To some cave's mouth; or whether washed by stream 
From underground;) the liquid ore he drained 
Into fit moulds prepared; from which he formed 
First his own tools; then, what might else be wrought 
Fusil or graven in metal. After these, 
But on the hither side, a diff...Read More

by Whittier, John Greenleaf
In its slant spendor, seemed to tell 
Of Pisa's leaning miracle. 

A prompt, decisive man, no breath 
Our father wasted: "Boys, a path!" 
Well pleased (for when did farmer boy 
Count such a summons less than joy?) 
Our buskins on our feet we drew; 
With mittened hands, and caps drawn low, 
To guard our necks and ears from snow, 
We cut the solid whiteness through. 
And, where the drift was deepest, made 
A tunnel walled and overlaid 
With dazzling crystal: we had r...Read More

by Chesterton, G K,
His strange, stiff olives did not fail,
And all the kings of the earth drank ale,
But he drank wine.

Wide over wasted British plains
Stood never an arch or dome,
Only the trees to toss and reel,
The tribes to bicker, the beasts to squeal;
But the eyes in his head were strong like steel,
And his soul remembered Rome.

Then Alfred of the lonely spear
Lifted his lion head;
And fronted with the Italian's eye,
Asking him of his whence and why,
King Alfred stood and sa...Read More

by Wilde, Oscar
Sing on! sing on! I would be drunk with life,
Drunk with the trampled vintage of my youth,
I would forget the wearying wasted strife,
The riven veil, the Gorgon eyes of Truth,
The prayerless vigil and the cry for prayer,
The barren gifts, the lifted arms, the dull insensate air!

Sing on! sing on! O feathered Niobe,
Thou canst make sorrow beautiful, and steal
From joy its sweetest music, not as we
Who by dead voiceless silence strive to heal
Our too untented wounds, and do b...Read More

by Tennyson, Alfred Lord
...s the statue, and the crown 
And both the wings are made of gold, and flame 
At sunrise till the people in far fields, 
Wasted so often by the heathen hordes, 
Behold it, crying, "We have still a King." 

`And, brother, had you known our hall within, 
Broader and higher than any in all the lands! 
Where twelve great windows blazon Arthur's wars, 
And all the light that falls upon the board 
Streams through the twelve great battles of our King. 
Nay, one there is, and ...Read More

by Carroll, Lewis
...that won't
 Be caught in a commonplace way.
Do all that you know, and try all that you don't:
 Not a chance must be wasted to-day!

"For England expects--I forbear to proceed:
 'Tis a maxim tremendous, but trite:
And you'd best be unpacking the things that you need
 To rig yourselves out for the fight."

Then the Banker endorsed a blank check (which he crossed),
 And changed his loose silver for notes.
The Baker with care combed his whiskers and hair,
 And shook t...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...rrible, and strong prison,
This seven year hath sitten Palamon,
Forpined*, what for love, and for distress. *pined, wasted away
Who feeleth double sorrow and heaviness
But Palamon? that love distraineth* so, *afflicts
That wood* out of his wits he went for woe, *mad
And eke thereto he is a prisonere
Perpetual, not only for a year.
Who coulde rhyme in English properly
His martyrdom? forsooth*, it is not I; *truly
Therefore I pass as lightly as I may.
It fell that i...Read More

by Scott, Sir Walter
...irl to cure,
     He rose and sought the moonshine pure.

     The wild rose, eglantine, and broom
     Wasted around their rich perfume;
     The birch-trees wept in fragrant balm;
     The aspens slept beneath the calm;
     The silver light, with quivering glance,
     Played on the water's still expanse,—
     Wild were the heart whose passion's sway
     Could rage beneath the sober ray!
     He felt its calm, that warrior guest,
     While thus h...Read More

by Robinson, Edwin Arlington
...ver the ephemeral, 
Found any barren height a good retreat 
From any swarming street,
And in the sun saw power superbly wasted; 
And when the primitive old-fashioned stars 
Came out again to shine on joys and wars 
More primitive, and all arrayed for doom, 
He may have proved a world a sorry thing
In his imagining, 
And life a lighted highway to the tomb. 

Or, mounting with infirm unsearching tread, 
His hopes to chaos led, 
He may have stumbled up there from the past, 
...Read More

by Chaucer, Geoffrey
...g the sign of the cross.

28. Forlore: lost; german, "verloren."

29. Him that harried Hell: Christ who wasted or subdued hell: in
the middle ages, some very active exploits against the prince of
darkness and his powers were ascribed by the monkish tale-
tellers to the saviour after he had "descended into hell."

30. According to the old mysteries, Noah's wife refused to
come into the ark, and bade her husband row forth and get him
a new wife, because ...Read More

by Warton, Thomas
...rns dark and damp,
Or the calm breeze, that rustles in the leaves
Of flaunting ivy, that with mantle green
Invests some wasted tower. Or let me tread
Its neighb'ring walk of pines, where mus'd of old
The cloister'd brothers : thro' the gloomy void
That far extends beneath their ample arch
As on I pace, religious horror wraps
My soul in dread repose. But when the world
Is clad in Midnight's raven-colour'd robe,
'Mid hollow charnel let me watch the flame
Of taper dim, s...Read More

by Akhmatova, Anna
"May your son live and healthy remain."

x x x

Oh, there are unrepeated words,
Who ever said wasted more than he should.
Inexhaustible only is the blue
Of sky and generosity of God....Read More

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