Poetry

Singapore by Mary Oliver

‘Singapore’ by Mary Oliver is a highly relatable poem that speaks about life’s struggles and the beauty of mundane and graceful work. It is set in an airport bathroom in Singapore. 

Singapore by Mary Oliver Visual Representation

The Poet by Paul Laurence Dunbar

‘The Poet’ by Paul Laurence Dunbar depicts how the poet saw himself and the elements of his work that gained popularity during his lifetime.

The Poet by Paul Laurence Dunbar Visual Representation

Traveling Light by Alice Fulton

‘Traveling Light’ by Alice Fulton is a powerful poem that weaves together images of the present and the past. Throughout, readers can explore Fulton’s understanding of her relationship with her father and her current relationship with the landscape around her.

Traveling Light by Alice Fulton Visual Representation

The Arrow and the Song by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

‘The Arrow and the Song’ by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is an interesting poem that utilizes quatrains. Throughout the piece, the speaker alludes to the unknown impact of his poetry before finding it in the heart of his friend in the last stanza.

The Arrow and the Song by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow Visual Representation

To Ireland in the Coming Times by William Butler Yeats

‘To Ireland in the Coming Times’ by William Butler Yeats is dedicated to the poet’s impact on Ireland’s political, social, and cultural landscape. It contains the poet’s beliefs about the nature of his verse.

To Ireland in the Coming Times by William Butler Yeats Visual Representation

An Introduction to Some Poems by William Stafford

William Stafford’s ‘An Introduction to Some Poems’ is about the role of budding poets. The speaker says that every life is worth writing about, and a writer’s work is to share “authentic” human experiences.

An Introduction to Some Poems by William Stafford Visual Representation

The Window by Diane di Prima

‘The Window,’ an interesting poem is written by the Beat poet Diane di Prima, compares poetry to a “window” to a writer’s soul. It showcases how poetry captures the very essence of the poet and her thoughts.

The Window by Diane di Prima Visual Representation

To The Stone-Cutters by Robinson Jeffers

Robinson Jeffers’s poem ‘To The Stone-Cutters’ explores the similarities between rock-cut sculptures and poetry. This piece highlights the timelessness of poetry.

To The Stone-Cutters by Robinson Jeffers Visual Representation

Riprap by Gary Snyder

Gary Snyder’s ‘Riprap’ describes how the oddly beautiful order of nature is “a riprap of things,” set in order from time immemorial. This piece taps on the themes of metaphysics, nature, and language.

Riprap by Gary Snyder Visual Representation

American Poetry by Louis Simpson

‘American Poetry’ appears in Louis Simpson’s award-winning collection At the End of the Open Road (1963). This piece is about the nature and range of poems produced throughout America.

American Poetry by Louis Simpson Visual Representation

Sonnet—To Science by Edgar Allen Poe

‘Sonnet—To Science’ by Edgar Allan Poe contains a speaker’s view on the damage science has done to the arts, particularly the art of poetry. 

Ars Poetica by Archibald MacLeish

‘Ars Poetica’ by Archibald MacLeish describes what the speaker believes to be the elements of successful and unsuccessful poetry. 

Write by Carol Ann Duffy 

‘Write’ by Carol Ann Duffy is a celebration of love and the power that writing has to depict and understand its emotional intensity. 

A Minor Poet by Stephen Vincent Benét

‘A Minor Poet’ by Stephen Vincent Benét describes the speaker’s beliefs about his own work and how it compares to the work of the world’s greatest writers. 

Sonnet 1 by Sir Philip Sidney

‘Sonnet 1’ is featured in Astrophil and Stella, a sonnet sequence. Astrophil and Stella narrates the story of Astrophil and his hopeless passion for Stella.

A Conceit by Maya Angelou

The speaker in ‘A Conceit’ by Maya Angelou indicates she is interested in a relationship that is real and tangible. This is not something she’s willing to back down from.

Days by Philip Larkin

‘Days’ by Philip Larkin is a beautiful poem that contemplates life in the poet’s typical fashion. He asks the reader to consider “What are days for?”

Discover and learn about the greatest poetry, straight to your inbox

Start Your Perfect Poetry Journey

The Best-Kept Secrets of Poetry

Discover and learn about the greatest poetry ever straight to your inbox