Self-Love Poems

Poems about self-love are a celebration of embracing one’s inherent worth and uniqueness. These verses promote the importance of self-care, urging individuals to prioritize their well-being and mental health.

They remind that loving oneself is not a selfish act but a prerequisite for nurturing healthy relationships with others.

These poems encourage readers to break free from self-doubt and negative self-perceptions, fostering a positive sense of self that empowers them to pursue their dreams and aspirations with confidence.

Still I Rise

by Maya Angelou

‘Still I Rise’ is an inspiring and emotional poem that’s based around Maya Angelou’s experiences as a Black woman in America. It encourages readers to love themselves fully and persevere in the face of every hardship.

Self-love is a recurring theme in this poem, emphasizing the importance of valuing and accepting oneself unconditionally. Maya Angelou's poem promotes self-compassion, encouraging readers to embrace their worth and nurture a positive relationship with themselves.

You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,

You may trod me in the very dirt

But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Sonnet to a Negro in Harlem

by Helene Johnson

‘Sonnet to a Negro in Harlem’ by Helene Johnson is a deeply affecting poem that lucidly attempts to uncover a man’s shortcomings alongside all that makes his superbly admirable.

The poem also touches on this idea of self-love and even offers a vision of what that looks like. The Harlem man is no doubt an extreme example, but the drama with which Johnson illustrates him is steeped in passion. It is the voice of someone who desires to view themselves as they view this man who burns so brightly with the love he has for himself.

You are disdainful and magnificent—

Your perfect body and your pompous gait,

Your dark eyes flashing solemnly with hate,

Small wonder that you are incompetent

Teddy Bear

by Alan Alexander Milne

In ‘Teddy Bear,’ the titular stuffed bear frets about his chubby body. A chance encounter with a plump passerby helps Teddy realize that fat men can still be held in high esteem, giving him newfound confidence about his appearance.

This piece is the perfect children's fable about self-love. The titular bear is initially unhappy with his tubby body, but learns to take pride in it over the course of the poem.

A bear, however hard he tries,

Grows tubby without exercise.

Our Teddy Bear is short and fat,

Which is not to be wondered at;

In Celebration of My Uterus

by Anne Sexton

‘In Celebration of My Uterus’ by Anne Sexton is an uplifting poem about the meaning of womanhood. The poem explores Sexton’s perspective on feminine identity.

Self-love takes a backseat but still remains an important topic in this poem. After all, it is Sexton's acceptance and love for her identity that produced 'In Celebration of My Uterus.'

Sweet weight,

in celebration of the woman I am

and of the soul of the woman I am

and of the central creature and its delight


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.

Publication is the Auction

by Emily Dickinson

‘Publication is the auction’ by Emily Dickinson is about the poet’s feelings toward her own works. It gives insight into her character and values.

Publication – is the Auction

Of the Mind of Man –

Poverty – be justifying

For so foul a thing

Explore more poems about Self-Love

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.

Sonnet 150

by William Shakespeare

‘Sonnet 150,’ also known as ‘O! from what power hast thou this powerful might,’ explores the ways the Dark Lady controls Shakespeare’s speaker. She makes him love her even though she’s cruel to 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. 

What can I give thee back, O liberal

And princely giver, who hast brought the gold

And purple of thine heart, unstained, untold,

And laid them on the outside of the-wall

The Friend

by Alan Alexander Milne

‘The Friend’ by A.A. Milne is a thoughtful poem about fear. The speaker openly discusses his own concerns about his creative work and reputation.

What the Living Do

by Marie Howe

‘What the Living Do’ by Marie Howe is a beautiful poem about contemporary life. Throughout, the speaker defines what it is the living do. 

We're glad you like visiting Poem Analysis...

We've got everything you need to master poetry

But, are you ready to take your learning

to the next level?