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What's your Favourite Poem and Why?

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posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 07:35 AM
I like poetry, especially poetry that has a message or meaning behind it. I was wondering if there were any other poetry fans out there and i was also hoping to broaden my collection of poetry as well.
My favourite poet is a Guy called Wilfred Owen, he served in the trenches of WW1 and wrote some of the most thought provoking poetry about War and its horrors ever written, IMHO. This is my favourite.

What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles' rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries for them from prayers or bells,
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,—
The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling for them from sad shires.

What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of good-byes.
The pallor of girls' brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of silent maids,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.

"Wilfred Owen (1893 - 1918)"

It conveys to me a sense of loss and hopelessness and a yearning for home. A very powerful verse from someone who was actually there.
Here is a link to Wilfred's other work.

The works of Wilfred Owen

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 08:49 AM
I don't really have much preference....I like funny ones:

"You love yourself.
You think your Grand.
When you go to the movies,
You hold your hand.
You put your arms
Around your waist,
And when you get fresh,
You slap your face."

From a modern nushrey rhyme book my mom had as a kid.

We walked in the lane together
The sky was covered with stars
We reached the gate in silence
As i lifted down the bars
She neither smiled nor thanked me
Because she knew not how
For i was only a Farmer's Boy
And she was a Jersey Cow.

Mom recited this for school, way back when, lol....

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 04:03 PM
I like the second one, ill remember it to tell my youngest daughter.

Heres another of my favorites.

Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

"William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)"

There is something special about this poem, it tends to have different meanings to different people.

The Works of William Butler Yeats

[edit on 31-1-2005 by Janus]

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 04:42 PM
I always liked The Rime Of The Ancient Mariner for its greybeard loons and albatrosses and intensity and fun factor.

But I never play favorites.

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 04:51 PM
I just read it MA, Epic dosent begin to do it justice. I tend to think every new poem i read is my favorite

Thankyou for putting me on to it, i hadnt read it before.

Could i ask you about the poem in your sig? Who wrote it and is there more to it?

[edit on 31-1-2005 by Janus]

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 05:09 PM
It's just the closing lines of a short poem called "The Divine Comedy" by an Italian stand-up called Dante Alighieri.

If you can read The Rime quickly, much of Dante will be a breeze for you, especially Inferno, which describes the nine levels of ATS nicely too.

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 05:13 PM
One of my very favorites is "There Will Come Soft Rains, August 2026" ( The Martian Chronicles ) by Ray Bradbury and a poem by Shakespere about beauty and the beast kind of thing but i have not been able to find it anywhere for years. I don't know that name of it.

Here is a link to an essay about Soft Rains but I think it is not published online:

It is a story of a house that keeps on living after a nuclear blast.

[edit on 1/31/2005 by Cherish]

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 05:14 PM
My favorite one that I taped up (my way of cheap laminating) when I was 16 went like this...

Never give all the heart, for love
Will hardly seem worth thinking of
To passionate women if it seem
Certain, and they never dream
That it fades out from kiss to kiss;
For everything that's lovely is
But a brief, dreamy. Kind delight.
O never give the heart outright,
For they, for all smooth lips can say,
Have given their hearts up to the play.
And who could play it well enough
If deaf and dumb and blind with love?
He that made this knows all the cost,
For he gave all his heart and lost.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939), Irish poet, playwright. "Never Give All the Heart."

[edit on 31-1-2005 by TrueLies]

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 05:25 PM
Thankyou MA, Cherish, jlc163, TrueLies you all have exellent taste in poetry. Im going to have to cut and past Dantes poem and copy it to my Pocket Pc so i can enjoy it on the train to work. I have just read Canto I and i love it already.

Im not really a big fan of Shelly but this one is one that always seems to stick in my mind. And its quite famous as well.

I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read,
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed,
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look upon my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

"Percy Bysshe Shelley

[edit on 31-1-2005 by Janus]

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 05:29 PM
I was reading more of William's poem's and found this one called among school children, the middle to end is the best I think...

This is the end and then i'll support the link at the bottom:

Labour is blossoming or dancing where
The body is not bruised to pleasure soul.
Nor beauty born out of its own despair,
Nor blear-eyed wisdom out of midnight oil.
O chestnut-tree, great-rooted blossomer,
Are you the leaf, the blossom or the bole?
O body swayed to music, O brightening glance,
How can we know the dancer from the dance?

Whole Poem

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 05:37 PM
Has anyone read Geoffrey Chaucer's Caterbury Tales? I have just finished reading them. I got the book for Christmas and read them through twice on my way to and from work. Im not sure they could be rightly called Poetry but they are very good.
Heres a link for them online.

The Caterbury Tales.

[edit on 31-1-2005 by Janus]

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 06:42 PM
This one of my favorite by W H Auden. 1907-1973

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 08:39 PM
I have a deep admiration for both writing and reading poetry....

One of my favorites, which I came across in one my college courses, is Persimmons, by Li-Young Lee:

"In sixth grade Mrs. Walker
slapped the back of my head
and made me stand in the corner
for not knowing the difference
between persimmon and precision.
How to choose

persimmons. This is precision.
Ripe ones are soft and brown-spotted.
Sniff the bottoms. The sweet one
will be fragrant. How to eat:
put the knife away, lay down the newspaper.
Peel the skin tenderly, not to tear the meat.
Chew on the skin, suck it,
and swallow. Now, eat
the meat of the fruit,
so sweet,
all of it, to the heart.

Donna undresses, her stomach is white.
In the yard, dewy and shivering
with crickets, we lie naked,
face-up, face-down,
I teach her Chinese.
Crickets: chiu chiu. Dew: I've forgotten.
Naked: I've forgotten.
Ni, wo: you and me.
I part her legs,
remember to tell her
she is beautiful as the moon.

Other words
that got me into trouble were
fight and fright, wren and yarn.
Fight was what I did when I was frightened,
fright was what I felt when I was fighting.
Wrens are small, plain birds,
yarn is what one knits with.
Wrens are soft as yarn.
My mother made birds out of yarn.
I loved to watch her tie the stuff;
a bird, a rabbit, a wee man.

Mrs. Walker brought a persimmon to class
and cut it up
so everyone could taste
a Chinese apple. Knowing
it wasn't ripe or sweet, I didn't eat
but watched the other faces.

My mother said every persimmon has a sun
inside, something golden, glowing,
warm as my face.

Once, in the cellar, I found two wrapped in newspaper,
forgotten and not yet ripe.
I took them and set them both on my bedroom windowsill,
where each morning a cardinal
sang, The sun, the sun.

Finally understanding
he was going blind,
my father sat up all one night
waiting for a song, a ghost.
I gave him the persimmons,
swelled, heavy as sadness,
and sweet as love.

This year, in the muddy lighting
of my parents' cellar, I rummage, looking
for something I lost.
My father sits on the tired, wooden stairs,
black cane between his knees,
hand over hand, gripping the handle.
He's so happy that I've come home.
I ask how his eyes are, a stupid question.
All gone, he answers.

Under some blankets, I find a box.
Inside the box I find three scrolls.
I sit beside him and untie
three paintings by my father:
Hibiscus leaf and a white flower.
Two cats preening.
Two persimmons, so full they want to drop from the cloth.

He raises both hands to touch the cloth,
asks, Which is this?

This is persimmons, Father.

Oh, the feel of the wolftail on the silk,
the strength, the tense
precision in the wrist.
I painted them hundreds of times
eyes closed. These I painted blind.
Some things never leave a person:
scent of the hair of one you love,
the texture of persimmons,
in your palm, the ripe weight."

Another favorite of mine...When Lialacs Last in the Door-yard Bloom'd by Walt Whitman...A small refrain from it goes:

"Passing the visions, passing the night;
Passing, unloosing the hold of my comrades’ hands;
Passing the song of the hermit bird, and the tallying song of my soul,
(Victorious song, death’s outlet song, yet varying, ever-altering song,
As low and wailing, yet clear the notes, rising and falling, flooding the night,
Sadly sinking and fainting, as warning and warning, and yet again bursting with joy,
Covering the earth, and filling the spread of the heaven,
As that powerful psalm in the night I heard from recesses,)
Passing, I leave thee, lilac with heart-shaped leaves;
I leave thee there in the door-yard, blooming, returning with spring,
I cease from my song for thee;
From my gaze on thee in the west, fronting the west, communing with thee,
O comrade lustrous, with silver face in the night. "

posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 08:59 PM
Well my favorite Poemy type thing is actually a Psalm (surprising aint it?), Psalm 23 verse 4:

"Yea though I walk through the valley of death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me."

But not in a religious sense, just cuz its neat. I like my own version of it better:

"As I walk through the valley of death, I shall fear no evil, for They rod and They staff are with me, and if they arent, IM #ED!"

My favorite actual poem is something that I found online a long time ago. I THINK its supposed to be a song, but im not sure. Its called The Eve of the Storm.

Searching to find presence of mind
Cranking the volume for kicks
Inflicting true pain, awaiting the rain
Looking for my metal fix
Poetic hate, unmercyful fate
Bringing my music to life
Grinding machine, decibel stream
Feeling the point of the knife
Artform of butchers, eve of the storm
The power is yours for the night
Chaos and power, true to the form
We're partying through to the light
Taking for fools, ignoring the rules
Doing what's right in our hearts
Searching for truth, preserving our youth
Intensity right from the start
Hyping our cause, writing my laws
They told me the good times were gone
Laugh in their face, such a disgrace
I guess it was time to move on
Fiery eyes, a sign of the wise
Something I'm doing for fun
Can't explain why I've got to try
There's no way that I'm gonna run
Playing it fast, just like the past
It's all just a part of my style
You'll never know what makes us go
I guess I'll be hanging awhile

posted on Feb, 1 2005 @ 07:06 AM
Studied this poem in grade 9, loved it ever since

The Road Not Taken

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth; 5

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same, 10

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I marked the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back. 15

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 20

By Robert Frost

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