Being Yourself

Embracing your personal journey, needs, wants, flaws, and strongest character traits are all part of being yourself.

Poems that explore this theme are often more contemporary than classic, but that doesn’t mean being yourself poems are confined to the present day. In fact, poets like William Blake, Rudyard Kipling, and even William Shakespeare considered this topic at one point in their poetic works.

Any piece of poetry that embraces individuality, self-confidence, and the desire to fulfill one’s personal goals is also a poem about being yourself. No matter who you are or where you’re from, these poems have a universal appeal. Everyone wants to be accepted for who they are, and these poets have put that desire into beautiful, unforgettable verse.

One day is there of the series

‘One day is there of the series’ by Emily Dickinson explores the holiday Thanksgiving and how its celebrated in America.

Pride by Jackie Kay

‘Pride’ by Jackie Kay is a moving poem about identity and pride. The poet utilized her personal experience when writing this piece. 

The Same Note by Jackie Kay

‘The Same Note’ by Jackie Kay depicts Bessie Smith’s musical ability and how she could unite people from all walks of life. 

My Grandmother by Jackie Kay

‘My Grandmother’ by Jackie Kay depicts the poet’s understanding of her grandmother. The includes a juxtaposition between her positive and negative qualities. 

Queenhood by Simon Armitage

‘Queenhood’ by Simon Armitage was written to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee in 2022. It celebrates the Queen’s lifetime of service and describes the unique features of her life. 

Muse by Meena Alexander

‘Muse’ by Meena Alexander is a poem about the poet’s muse or source of inspiration. The poet recalls meeting and being positively influenced by a girl in her youth. 

Got You by Jackie Kay

‘Got You’ by Jackie Kay is an interesting poem about sibling jealousy and the strength of sisterhood. The speaker is a discouraged child who believes her sister is superior to her in every way.

I have never seen “Volcanoes”

‘I have never seen “Volcanoes”’ by Emily Dickinson is a clever, complex poem that compares humans and their emotions to a volcano’s eruptive power. 

Into My Own by Robert Frost

Robert Frost’s ‘Into My Own’ explores the concepts of maturity and growing up. The poet delves into the exploration of childhood and self.

She rose to His Requirement—dropt

‘She rose to His Requirement – dropt’ by Emily Dickinson speaks to the lack of freedom and respect women had in Dickinson’s time. It emphasizes the confining nature of marriage and society’s expectations for a married woman.

Sonnet 35 by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

‘Sonnet 35’ by Elizabeth Barrett Browning expresses the speaker’s worries about the changes in her life. She embarks on a new life with her beloved and hopes he’s ready to accept her in the same way she’s accepting him.

Sonnet 8 by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

‘Sonnet 8’ by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, also known as ‘What can I give thee back, O liberal,’ is a Petrarchan sonnet. It explores the poet’s relationship with her new lover, Robert Browning. 

A still— Volcano —Life

‘A still— Volcano —Life’ by Emily Dickinson is an unforgettable poem that uses an extended metaphor to describe the life of the poet. She compares herself to a volcano that erupts under the cover of darkness.

Never Trust a Mirror by Erin Hanson

‘Never Trust a Mirror’ by Erin Hanson is a poem about beauty and self-worth. The poet describes the untrustworthy nature of a mirror and how one shouldn’t take what they see in it for granted. 

Leap Before You Look by W. H. Auden

W. H. Auden’s instructive poem ‘Leap Before You Look’ (1940) counsels readers to take risks rather than being cautious in each step. This poem is written in a wise and caring tone.

Saint Francis and the Sow by Galway Kinnell

‘Saint Francis and the Sow,’ a poem from Galway Kinnell’s collection Mortal Acts, Mortal Words (1980), explores the spiritual beauty inside each creature that is needed to be retaught and retouched for spiritual growth.

Samurai Song by Robert Pinsky

Robert Pinsky’s ‘Samurai Song’ shows readers a daunting path to achieve fearlessness, mental peace, and most importantly, freedom from all kinds of suffering.

Inventory by Dorothy Parker

‘Inventory’ by Dorothy Parker is a thoughtful and entertaining poem. It outlines what the speaker has in her life, would be wiser to know, better off without, and more.

Eagle Poem by Joy Harjo

Have you ever wondered how graciously an eagle floats in the sky by making circular movements? In ‘Eagle Poem,’ Joy Harjo depicts how it is similar to the cycle of life.

Some keep the Sabbath going to Church –

‘Some keep the Sabbath going to Church –’ is one of Emily Dickinson’s best-known poems. It features the poet’s growing disbelief regarding the customary Christian rituals and her intention to seek salvation without resorting to the conventional means.

My River runs to thee

In Emily Dickinson’s ‘My River runs to thee,’ readers explore an extended metaphor that may have sexual or religious undertones. 

Rhyme of the Dead Self by A.R.D. Fairburn

‘Rhyme of the Dead Self’ by A.R.D. Fairburn is a captivating poem in which the poet speaks about youth and coming of age through images of violence and religion.

Going to him! Happy letter!

‘Going to him! Happy letter!’ by Emily Dickinson is a sweet love poem. It is told from the perceptive of a love letter.

Fame is a bee

‘Fame is a bee’ by Emily Dickinson uses a bee to describe the fleeting nature of fame. She uses clever images and original poetic writing throughout.

The Brain—is wider than the Sky

‘The Brain – is wider than the Sky’ by Emily Dickinson focuses on the complexity of the human brain. She celebrates its beauty and wonder.

Much Madness is divinest Sense

‘Much Madness is divinest Sense’ by Emily Dickinson is an exacting and poignant poem that expresses the speaker’s opinion of sanity and insanity. 

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