Summer Poems

Poems about summer exude the vibrant essence of the season, celebrating its warmth, abundance, and carefree spirit. 

Poets capture the sensory delights of summer, from the aroma of freshly cut grass to the taste of sweet, juicy fruits. These poems often evoke nostalgia and joy, recalling cherished memories of carefree summers past.

They may also delve into the symbolism of summer as a time of growth, renewal, and the fullness of life. Poems about summer invite readers to bask in the season’s splendor and embrace the fleeting beauty of its moments.

June (from “The Vision of Sir Launfal”)

by James Russell Lowell

‘June’ by James Russell Lowell is a religiously-charged romantic narrative poem about the overwhelming beauty and rejuvenating power of summer. 

The speaker of this poem seems to find evidence for the existence of heaven and God on warm summer days when the sunlight brings everything back to life after winter. The depiction of summer as an ethereal, overwhelmingly wonderful, and peaceful time makes this poem a truly pleasant read.

And what is so rare as a day in June?

Then, if ever, come perfect days;

Then Heaven tries the earth if it be in tune,

And over it softly her warm ear lays:

From Blossoms

by Li-Young Lee

‘From Blossoms’ describes the simple joys of summer. It uses peaches to explore the vivid interconnectedness of the world.

This poem is set on a summer day and is fundamentally connected to the concept of summer. It describes a quintessentially summery experience of buying fruit from a roadside stand and eating it.

From blossoms comes

this brown paper bag of peaches

we bought from the boy

at the bend in the road where we turned toward

As Imperceptibly as Grief

by Emily Dickinson

‘As imperceptibly as grief’ by Emily Dickinson analyzes grief. The poet compares it to the passing away of the summer.

The lackadaisical description of how summer "lapsed away" captures the essence of the poem's argument which is that seasons and emotions rarely make their demise known. Rather a person becomes aware that something has ended over time, whether it be the summer or a feeling of grief for a lost loved one.

As imperceptibly as Grief

The Summer lapsed away—

Too imperceptible at last

To seem like Perfidy—

A drop fell on the apple tree

by Emily Dickinson

‘A drop fell on the apple tree’ by Emily Dickinson is filled with joy. It describes, with Dickinson’s classic skill, images of the summer season and how a storm can influence it.

The contrast between summer's heat and the rain of the storm functions as a manifestation of the human experience of nature. Sometimes we bask in its heat and other times we shield ourselves from its power but it is protecting us at all times, even when it may not seem to be.

A drop fell on the apple tree

Another on the roof;

A half a dozen kissed the eaves,

And made the gables laugh.

Summer Solstice, New York City

by Sharon Olds

‘Summer Solstice, New York City’ by Sharon Olds is a deeply moving poem that conveys the tender importance of remembering our capacity for human compassion.

The poem makes reference to a specific season: summer, with the purpose of using the longest day of the year to emphasize how fed up the man is. Additionally, there is the insinuation of the heat that comes with such a day and the way rising temperatures have a way of exacerbating the tension and anxiety.

By the end of the longest day of the year he could not stand it,

he went up the iron stairs through the roof of the building

Sonnet 18

by William Shakespeare

‘Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer’s Day?,’ also known as ‘Sonnet 18,’ is one of the Fair Youth poems. It is addressed to a mysterious male figure that scholars have been unable to identify.

This poem celebrates the warmth, brightness, and beauty of the season. The poem suggests that summer is a time of abundance, vitality, and joy and that it represents the height of natural beauty and fertility. Shakespeare's reflections on summer reflect his understanding of the rhythms of the natural world and his appreciation for the simple pleasures of life.

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?

Thou art more lovely and more temperate:

Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,

And summer's lease hath all too short a date:

My Garden — like the Beach

by Emily Dickinson

‘My Garden — like the Beach’ by Emily Dickinson is a beautiful, short poem. It compares the speaker’s garden to the beach and the summer to the sea. Read the full poem, with a complete analysis.

Summer is a time of growth and abundance, when nature is at its most beautiful and vibrant. Dickinson references the season of summer to underscore the beauty of the garden and the natural world.

My Garden—like the Beach—

Denotes there be—a Sea—

That's Summer—

Waves of summer grass

by Matsuo Bashō

‘Waves of summer grass’ by Matsuo Bashō is a beautiful and sorrowful haiku poem about loss and death symbolized in nature.

Summer in the poem represents a season of vitality and growth. It sets the stage for the image of swaying grass, creating a backdrop of warmth and abundance that contrasts with the tragedy and impermanence explored in the poem.

Waves of summer grass:

All that remains of soldiers’

Impossible dreams.

A Bird Song

by Christina Rossetti

‘A Bird Song’ by Christina Rossetti describes, through the interactions of swallows, the need a speaker has for a consistent companion. 

It's a year almost that I have not seen her:

Oh, last summer green things were greener,

Brambles fewer, the blue sky bluer.

A Dirge

by Christina Rossetti

‘A Dirge’ by Christina Rossetti is a thoughtful and moving poem about death. It speaks on the birth and death of an important person in the speaker’s life.

Why were you born when the snow was falling?

You should have come to the cuckoo’s calling,

Or when grapes are green in the cluster,

Or, at least, when lithe swallows muster

Explore more poems about Summer

A Lament

by Percy Bysshe Shelley

O world! O life! O time!

On whose last steps I climb,

Trembling at that where I had stood before;

When will return the glory of your prime?


by Philip Larkin

‘Afternoons’ by Philip Larkin presents a brief depiction of post-war Britain. He explores less than ideal family relationships and gives the period an overall gloomy tone.

Summer is fading:

The leaves fall in ones and twos

From trees bordering

The new recreation ground.

And Soul

by Eavan Boland

‘And Soul’ by Eavan Boland is a poem about death and a body’s dissolution into the elements that it is made up of. The poet emphasizes the connection between a human being made nearly entirely of water and a city that’s drenched by a particularly rainy summer season. 

Artist’s Life

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

‘Artist’s Life’ by Ella Wheeler Wilcox describes the personal and emotional connection a speaker has to Strauss’ composition, Artist’s Life. 

Hurrahing in Harvest

by Gerard Manley Hopkins

Summer ends now; now, barbarous in beauty, the stooks rise

Around; up above, what wind-walks! What lovely behaviour

Of silk-sack clouds! has wilder, wilful-wavier

Meal-drift moulded ever and melted across skies?

Love’s Alchemy

by John Donne

Some that have deeper digg'd love's mine than I,

Say, where his centric happiness doth lie;

         I have lov'd, and got, and told,

But should I love, get, tell, till I were old,


by Christina Rossetti

‘May’ by Christina Rossetti describes an unknown, now finished, event a speaker experienced in the warm, young and pleasant month of May.

Old Song

by Edward FitzGerald

‘Old Song’ by Edward FitzGerald describes a speaker depression over the long weeks of winter, and eventual joy over the coming spring. 


by A. E. Stallings

‘Olives’ is the title poem of A.E. Stallings’ third book of poetry by the same name. It explores the features of the fruit and its resemblance to her poems.

Poem in October

by Dylan Thomas

‘Poem in October’ tells of a speaker’s journey out of autumn and up a hill to reclaim childhood joy, the summer season and his spirituality. 

Though the town below lay leaved with October blood.

O may my heart's truth

Still be sung

On this high hill in a year's turning.

Ragged Island

by Edna St. Vincent Millay

‘Ragged Island’ by Edna St. Vincent Millay is a personal poem about Millay’s days spent on Ragged Island off the coast of Maine. It explores the peace of mind the place was able to bring out in her. 

September Midnight

by Sara Teasdale

‘September Midnight’ by Sara Teasdale tells of a speaker’s affection for the last days of summer and all the sights and sounds that go with it.

Something Told the Wild Geese

by Rachel Field

‘Something Told the Wild Geese’ by Rachel Field discusses geese, and other animals, reactions to signs of winter. The poem takes place in summer and warns against being unprepared and dwelling on unhappiness. 

Song of the Flower

by Kahlil Gibran

‘Song of the Flower’ by Khalil Gibran describes what the life of a flower involves, from sunrises and weddings to perpetual optimism. 

Song: How sweet I roam’d from field to field

by William Blake

‘Song: How sweet I roam’d from field to field’ by William Blake describes the wanderings of a woman who is captured by Apollo.

How sweet I roam'd from field to field,

         And tasted all the summer's pride,

'Till I the prince of love beheld,

         Who in the sunny beams did glide!

Sonnet 6

by William Shakespeare

Read Shakespeare’s Sonnet 6, also known as ‘Then let not winter’s ragged hand deface’, with a deep dive analysis into the poem.

Then let not winter's ragged hand deface,

In thee thy summer, ere thou be distilled:

Make sweet some vial; treasure thou some place

With beauty's treasure ere it be self-killed.

Spring and Fall

by Gerard Manley Hopkins

‘Spring and Fall’ by Gerard Manley Hopkins uses a unique rhyme scheme and the concept of nature’s demise as a representation of something much deeper.

Summer Morn in New Hampshire

by Claude McKay

‘Summer Morn in New Hampshire’ by Claude McKay describes how one speaker is unmoved by the brilliance of day as he is too consumed by his love for another. 

Summer Past

by John Gray 

‘Summer Past’ by John Gray describes a past summer which contained elements much treasured by the speaker for their divine and natural beauty. 

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