Hilda Doolittle

Hilda Doolittle Poems

Hilda Doolittle was one of the leading members of the Imagist movement. Her work is packed full of beautiful, memorable images that convey her meaning clearly and movingly. Although the movement was short-lived, her work certainly is not. Read more about Hilda Doolittle.

“Venice — Venus?” (#5 from Hermetic Definition: ‘Red Rose and a Beggar’)

by Hilda Doolittle

“Venice — Venus?” by Hilda Doolittle is an insightful poem about Doolittle’s reasons for writing despite critiques. Doolittle reveals that her ultimate source of inspiration is divine.

"Venice — Venus?" is one of the most frequently quoted Hilda Doolittle poems. Although it hasn't gotten as much attention as it deserves, it is one of her best works. The poem succinctly describes Doolittle's passion for writing, and it also addresses the themes of love and the classics, which Doolittle almost always found a way to work into her poetry.

Venice — Venus?

this must be my stance,

my station: though you brushed aside

“Take me anywhere” (from Hermetic Definition: ‘Red Rose and a Beggar’)

by Hilda Doolittle

In “Take me anywhere, anywhere;” by Hilda Doolittle, the poet-speaker addresses a lover, expressing the way in which she takes refuge in their affection.

"Take me anywhere, anywhere" is characteristic of Hilda Doolittle's free verse love poems in which she conveys a dark tone. It includes some of the most common themes found in her poetry, such as mysticism, psychoanalysis, love, and lust. It is also an excellent example of the poet's "crystalline" writing, packing tons of emotions and information into a small package.

Take me anywhere, anywhere;

I walk into you,


“Why did you come” (#1 from Hermetic Definition: ‘Red Rose and a Beggar’)

by Hilda Doolittle

‘Why did you come’ by Hilda Doolittle is a free-verse poem about love, self-criticism, aging, and the human inability to control judgments and desires.

While this poem is not among H.D.'s most famous poems, it represents the beginning of a book of poetry that reflects on her growth throughout her life and career. 'Why Did You Come' departs from H.D.'s more distinctly imagist poems, representing her own voice and creative freedom.

Why did you come

to trouble my decline?

I am old (I was old till you came);


by Hilda Doolittle

‘Circe’ by Hilda Doolittle is a poem that gives voice to Circe, a goddess and master of magical enchantments. Despite her power, she laments that she cannot control love.

'Circe' represents a pivotal time in Doolittle's poetic style, but as a result, it also represents Doolittle's experimentation with some modernist poetics that are not necessarily typical in the rest of her works. While 'Circe' is a good poem by all accounts, it doesn't contain as much meaning as some of HD's more compressed, allusive poems.

It was easy enough

to bend them to my wish,

it was easy enough

to alter them with a touch,

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