Poets like Lucy Maud Montgomery and Mary Oliver remind readers of the important connection between humankind and the natural world, one that is best explored by spending time outside with one’s thoughts and the night sky for company.
Best Poems about Camping
- 1 Camping Out by Gina Marie Lauchner
- 2 The Forest Path by Lucy Maud Montgomery
- 3 Night on the Mountain by George Sterling
- 4 Earth Voices by Bliss Carman
- 5 The River by Sara Teasdale
- 6 Teach Me Your Mood, O Patient Stars by Ralph Waldo Emerson
- 7 Mountain Evening Song by Jeffrey Robin
- 8 Around the Campfire by Emilie Pinet
- 9 Sleeping in the Forest by Mary Oliver
- 10 Starlight by William Meredith
- 11 FAQs
Camping Out by Gina Marie Lauchner
‘Camping Out’ by Gina Marie Lauchner is a simple and thoughtful poem in which the poet describes the experience of camping outside. She takes the reader through many of the sights and sounds one might see while also evoking sense imagery through her depiction of the fire. The poet also uses literary devices, like alliteration, to create additional moments of unity throughout the text. Here are a few lines from the poem:
Sitting by a fire and dodging the sparks
There’s nothing greater than
The great outdoors after dark.
The Forest Path by Lucy Maud Montgomery
Readers who love camping and spending time outside will also be interested in ‘The Forest Path’ by Lucy Maud Montgomery. The poet uses the lines of this piece to explore the power of a walk through the woods. As the speaker goes deeper into the forest, more sights and sounds reveal themselves. There’s a hint of magic in the poem as the poet describes “elusive laughter,” “satyrs,” and the piping of Pan. Here are a few lines from the beginning of the poem:
Oh, the charm of idle dreaming
Where the dappled shadows dance,
All the leafy aisles are teeming
With the lure of old romance!
Night on the Mountain by George Sterling
‘Night on the Mountain’ by George Sterling is a beautiful poem that evokes feelings of solitude and the sublime in nature. The poet uses examples of personification and imagery to depict the natural world. There are also similes and metaphors present in this piece. The mountain, the speaker says, “seems no more a soulless thing.” Any reader who has spent time outside, enjoying the peace of the natural world, will enjoy reading the three stanzas of ‘Night on the Mountain.’ Here are the first four lines:
The fog has risen from the sea and crowned
The dark, untrodden summits of the coast,
Where roams a voice, in canyons uttermost,
From midnight waters vibrant and profound.
Explore more George Sterling poems.
Carman’s ‘Earth Voices’ is a powerful piece written from a first-person perspective. The poet celebrates the natural world, using phrases like “dancing stream” and “dawn with crimson” to paint a clear picture. The poem also brings in some supernatural-seeming elements, something that’s not unusual for poems on this list. The poet speaks about the “spring wind” whispering and relays its words. The poem ends with the line : “The life we give to beauty / Returns to us again.” Here are a few more lines from the poem:
Within the dying ashes
I blow the sacred spark,
And make the hearts of lovers
To leap against the dark.
The River by Sara Teasdale
‘The River’ by Sara Teasdale is a short, three-stanza poem. In it, the poet uses beautiful imagery to describe “sunny valleys” and “gray expanses.” She sought out “peace” in these places, just as one might seek out peaceful moments when camping. She uses comparisons in this piece as well, relating herself to the “rainfall” and the “sea.” This evokes a feeling of interconnectivity between humankind and the natural world. Here are the first few lines:
I came from the sunny valleys
And sought for the open sea,
For I thought in its gray expanses
My peace would come to me.
Read more of Sara Teasdale’s poetry.
Emerson’s writing is quite popular with those who enjoy reading about the natural world. He’s well-known for his nature-based poems and ‘Teach Me Your Mood, O Patient Stars’ is another great example. The poem is only four lines long. It reads:
Teach me your mood, O patient stars!
Who climb each night the ancient sky,
Leaving on space no shade, no scars,
No trace of age, no fear to die.
The poet puts a great deal of confidence in the natural world, suggesting that there’s a great deal for him to learn and experience from it.
‘Mountain Evening Song’ by Jeffrey Robin is a contemporary poem about spending time alongside a campfire. The poem brings together natural images of fire and the warmth of friends and family. The faces of those one cares about are lit up by the fire’s light. This poem is meant to celebrate the experience of spending time outside at night and what a different experience it is. It’s only known by those who sit around the campfire.
( the campfire)
By the light of the fire
‘Around the Campfire’ by Emilie Pinet is another contemporary poem that uses figurative language to describe the experience of sitting around a campfire at night. It’s a powerful experience, one that is able to bring peace to a worried soul. The poet writes:
Rising from the fire like a phoenix,
ash morphs into flights of flaming darts.
And shadows mark the fringes of light
extinguishing all unwary sparks.
In Oliver’s ‘Sleeping in the Forest’ the poet describes what it was like for her speaker to sleep outside and experience a new kind of rest. It was unlike anything she’d experienced before. She knew the world differently after she had “Nothing between [her] and the white fire of the stars.”
I slept as never before,
A stone on the riverbed,
Nothing between me and the white fire of the stars,
But my thoughts.
Explore more Mary Oliver poems.
Starlight by William Meredith
‘Starlight’ by William Meredith is another poem that celebrates one’s connection to the natural world. The poet spends the stanzas exploring what it’s like to look up into the stars and see their shapes and patterns. He references the many stories humankind has crafted throughout the centuries to describe the night sky.
As for me, I would find faces there,
Or perhaps one face I have long taken for guide;
Far-fetched, maybe, like Cygnus, but as fair,
And a constellation anyone could read
Once it was pointed out; an enlightenment of night,
The way the pronoun you will turn dark verses bright.
Poets write about camping when they want to explore a variety of images and themes. These include images of nature like the forest, the sea, and stars. The natural world has long since provided authors with inspiration.
Camping poems use themes like solitude, freedom, and nature. These themes are related to one another in the way that a speaker might consider their experience in the natural world and the reasons why they may have embarked upon it in the first place.
Camping poems are often contemplative and celebratory. They usually explore their themes clearly and thoughtfully. Sometimes, despite the setting, these poems focus on the time family and friends spend together leading to a loving tone.
The vast majority of poems written about camping convey a meaning in regard to the importance of spending time in the natural world. Often, they also connect nature to solitude.
Some of the poets who have created the most successful nature poems are Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Robert Frost, and Walt Whitman. They wrote some of the most memorable poems that touch on themes common to camping poetry.