Category: Poetry

Great poems for study, copywork, memorization, dictation, and enjoyment.

Poet’s Calendar by Longfellow

The Poet’s Calendar, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow JANUARY Janus am I; oldest of potentates; Forward I look, and backward, and below I count, as god of avenues and gates, The years that through my portals come and go. I block the roads, and drift the fields with snow; I chase the wild-fowl from the frozen fen; My frosts congeal the rivers in their flow, My fires light up the hearths and hearts of men. FEBRUARY I am lustration, and the sea is mine! I wash the sands and headlands with my tide; My brow is crowned with branches of the pine; Before my chariot-wheels the fishes glide. By me all things unclean are purified, By me the souls of men washed white again; E’en the unlovely tombs of those who died Without a dirge, I cleanse from every stain. MARCH I Martius am!  Once first, and now the third! To lead the Year was my appointed place; A mortal dispossessed me by a word, And set there Janus with the double face. Hence I make war on all the human race; I shake the cities with my hurricanes; I flood the rivers and their banks efface, And drown the farms and hamlets with my rains....

Prayer for Deliverance from the Pestilence

Pestilence, plague, pandemic — whatever you call it, it’s nothing new.  From Oedipus Rexby Sophocles CHORUSLORD of the Pythian treasure [1],What meaneth the word thou hast spoken?The strange and wondrous word,Which Thebes has heard,Oh!...

February Poems

A Calendar of Sonnets: February by Helen Hunt Jackson Still lie the sheltering snows, undimmed and white; And reigns the winter’s pregnant silence still; No sign of spring, save that the catkins fill, And...

Mary Shelley Poetry

Stanzas by Mary Shelley Oh, come to me in dreams, my love! I will not ask a dearer bliss; Come with the starry beams, my love, And press mine eyelids with thy kiss. ’Twas...

January Poems

January can be a very cold month in the northern hemisphere, and many poets have reflected upon this! A Calendar of Sonnets: January by Helen Hunt Jackson O Winter! frozen pulse and heart of fire,...

December Poems

DECEMBER by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow Riding upon the Goat, with snow-white hair, I come, the last of all.  This crown of mine Is of the holly; in my hand I bear The thyrsus, tipped with fragrant cones of pine. I celebrate the birth of the Divine, And the return of the Saturnian reign;– My songs are carols sung at every shrine. Proclaiming “Peace on earth, good will to men.” *** A Calendar of Sonnets: December by Helen Hunt Jackson The lakes of ice gleam bluer than the lakes Of water...

Dorothy Wordsworth Poetry

He Said He Had Been a Soldier by Dorothy Wordsworth He said he had been a soldier, That his wife and children Had died in Jamaica. He had a begger’s wallet over his shoulders,...

November Poems

NOVEMBER by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow The Centaur, Sagittarius, am I,Born of Ixion’s and the cloud’s embrace;With sounding hoofs across the earth I fly,A steed Thessalian with a human face.Sharp winds the arrows are with which I chaseThe leaves, half dead already with affright;I shroud myself in gloom; and to the raceOf mortals bring nor comfort nor delight. *** A Calendar of Sonnets: November by Helen Hunt Jackson This is the treacherous month when autumn daysWith summer’s voice come bearing summer’s gifts.Beguiled, the pale down-trodden aster liftsHer...

October Poems for copyworb and memorization.

October Poems

The crisp chill of autumn has inspired more than just pumpkin spice — it has inspired poets through the centuries to capture it in all its leaf-bright glory. Here are a few October poems...

September Poems

One of my favorite September poems is a story by Quaker poet, John Greenleaf Whittier. Barbara Frietchie by John Greenleaf Whittier (1807–1892) Up from the meadows rich with corn, Clear in the cool September...

July Poems for memorization, recitation, and copywork.

July Poems

We in the northern hemisphere may be melting in the July heat, but there are compensations. July poems from poets such as Emily Dickinson, Robert Louis Stevenson, Amy Lowell, and Lewis Carroll remind us...

Marianne Moore Poetry

Marianne Moore (1887 – 1972) was an American modernist poet, critic, translator, and editor. She won several awards for her poetry in her lifetime, and her poems are frequently anthologized. Poetry (1919) by Marianne...

Rainer Maria Rilke Poetry

Rainer Maria Rilke (1875 – 1926) was a Bohemian-Austrian poet and novelist. He is seen as one of the most lyrically intense German-language poets. His works include several collections of poetry, one novel, and...

Roman Poetry

The earliest Roman poetry (actually Latin poetry) dates back to the second century B. C. It is often understood as an adaptation of models originally designed by the Greeks. One of the most spectacular and...

Reading Gaol cell

The Ballad of Reading Gaol

The Ballad of Reading Gaol (gaol is the British spelling of jail) narrates the story of an execution that occurred while Oscar Wilde was imprisoned in the late 1890s. It does not attempt to...

Robert Burns Poetry

Robert Burns (1759 – 1796), a Scottish poet and lyricist is not only the best known of the poets who have written in the Scots language, but he has long been considered the national...

Sir Walter Scott Poetry

Much of Sir Walter Scott’s poetry reflects the stories and themes of courage, justice, and romance found in his novels. Here are three of his shorter poems, “Lochinvar,” “Breathes There the Man,” and “Old...

Ellen Sturgis Hooper poem.

Ellen Sturgis Hooper Poetry

Ellen Sturgis Hooper (1812 – 1848) was an American poet and member of the Transcendental Club, and widely regarded as one of the most gifted among the New England Transcendentalist poets. She and her...

William Blake's handwritten poem, "A Poison Tree."

A Poison Tree by William Blake

“A Poison Tree,” which explores the dangers of anger and revenge, was first published in Blake’s Songs of Experience in 1794. It has been set to music by Ralph Vaughan Williams in his Ten Blake...