poems for big folks

The poems we use to tell and retell, to mold or remember, the moments which make us anew. My personal requisites-fuels are marked with +.

Anna Akhmatova (bio)

Requiem
“We never quite learned to part…”
We’re all heavy drinkers and whores…”
We thought: we’re poor…”

Guilliame Appollinaire (bio)

Hunting Horns

Dante Allegheri (bio)

The love of God, perfect and unutterable

Yehuda Amichai (bio)

I, May I Rest in Peace
Near the Wall of A House
Quick and Bitter
God Has Pity on Kindergarten Children
Letter

Candice Amich (bio)

Residue

A.R. Ammons (bio)

Poetics
Hymn

Matthew Arnold (bio)

Youth and Calm

John Ashbery (bio)

The Grapevine
Brute Image
The One Thing That Can Save America
Paradoxes and Oxymorons
The Painter
Rivers and Mountains
Melodic Trains
Love in Boots
Meaningful Love
Mottled Tuesday

Margaret Atwood (bio)

In the Secular Night
You Begin
Flowers
Up

W. H. Auden (bio)

The More Loving One
Like Love
Lullaby
If I Could Tell You
The More Loving One
Spain 1937
In Praise of Limestone
Foxtrot From a Play

Ingeborg Bachmann (bio)

Stay
Every Day
[I Step Outside Myself]

Andrei Bely (bio)

Glossolalia

John Bennett (bio)

AHM #2

Wendell Berry (bio)

The Peace of Wild Things
Manifesto: The Mad Farmer’s Liberation Front
They
The Country of Marriage
How To Be A Poet
Marriage
A Homecoming
They
The Wish to Be Generous
Now

John Bennett (bio)

AHM #2

Elizabeth Bishop (bio)

Sestina
One Art

William Blake (bio)

The Clod and the Pebble

Helen Blackshear (bio)

The Watchers
The Bonding

Ana Blandiana (bio)

Morning Elegy
Everything

Edmund Blunden (bio)

1916 Seen From 1921

Robert Bly (bio)

The Night Abraham Called to the Stars
Monday: When the Cat Stole the Milk
Those Being Eaten By America
Taking the Hands

Louise Bogan (bio)

Betrothed
Juan’s Song
Knowledge
Women
Henceforth, From the Mind

Jorge Luis Borges (bio)

Instants
Limits
Borges and I
You Learn
In Anticipaton of Love
To The One Who Is Reading Me
Things That Might Have Been

Anne Bradstreet (bio)

To My Dear and Loving Husband

Richard Brautigan (bio)

All Watched Over By Machines of Loving Grace
The Return of the Rivers
The Curve of Forgotten Things
Death Is A Beautiful Car Parked Only
Early Spring Mud Puddle At An Off Angle
I’ve Never Had It Done So Gently Before
A Mid-February Sky-Dance
Xerox Candy Bar
Nice Ass

Andre Breton (bio)

Free Union

Joseph Brodsky (bio)

I Sit By the Window

Emily Bronte (bio)

Fall, Leaves, Fall

Gwendolyn Brooks (bio)

The Mother
The Sonnet-Ballad
kitchenette building
the rites for Cousin Vit
The Bean Eaters

Charles Bukowski (bio)

Confession
Finish

Lord Byron (bio)

Lines Inscribed Upon a Cup Formed From a Skull

Witter Bynner (bio)

I Come and I Go
Sands
To Celia
Lightning
Crystal
Dusk

Roy Campbell (bio)

A Mast

Raymond Carver (bio)

The Gift
The World Bank Salesman
Sunday Night
Hummingbird
Nearly
Happiness
Cherish
Waiting
No Need
This Word, Love

Nina Cassian (bio)

Morning Exercises

Paul Celan (bio)

O little root of a dream
Fugue of Death

Andree Chedid (bio)

Who Remains Standing?

John Chrystosom (bio)

Without A Place and With A Place
Dark Night
I Live Yet Do Not Live

Sandra Cisneros (bio)

Loose Woman

John Clare (bio)

Love’s Story
I Hid My Love

Lucille Clifton (bio)

Cutting Greens

St. Clare of Assisi (bio)

When you have loved, you shall be chaste

Andrei Codrescu(bio)

Houses, Scams, Language (with a line in Romanian)
An Accident

Leonard Cohen (bio)

Good Germans
To A Young Nun

Billy Collins (bio)

The Future
Introduction to Poetry
Pensee
Weighing the Dog
Rip Van Winkle
American Sonnet
Forgetfulness
Theme
Freud
Some Days

Martha Collins (bio)

Lines

Alice Corbin (bio)

Love Me At Last

Gregory Corso (bio, video)

Marriage
Bomb (beat)

George Cosbuc (bio )

The Poet
We Want Land translated by Maurice Aisen
Peasant Love Songs

Adelaide Crapsey (bio)

Triad (cinquain)
Fate Defied (cinquian)
Dirge

Robert Creeley (bio)

America
The World
I Know A Man
Valentine for You
The American Dream
Dried Roses
The Rain

e. e. cummings (bio)

I Thank You God for Most This Amazing
spring is perhaps like a hand
hist whist
They fingers make early flowers
maggie and milly and molly and mae
the Cambridge ladies who live in furnished souls
since feeling is first
somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
anyone lived in a pretty how town
i have found what you are like
[next to of course god america i] [my sweet old etcetera]

H. D. (bio)

The mysteries remain

Mahmoud Darwish (bio)

Steps in the Night
We Walk Towards A Land

Peter Davison (bio)

Peaches

Robert Desnos (bio)

I have dreamed of you so much
Fairy Tale
Sky Song

James Dickey (bio)

Buckdancer’s Choice

George Dillon (bio)

Marching Song
A Dreamer of Leaves

Stephen Dobyns (bio)

Loud Music
Contingencies
It’s Like This
Lullaby (audio)
Grief

Jeanne D’Orge (bio)

The Sewing Bee

Keith Douglas (bio)

Aristocratfs

Rita Dove (bio)

Vacation

John Drinkwater (bio)

Reciprocity

Peter Kane Dufalt (bio)

A Letter for All-Hallows’, 1949

Carol Ann Duffy (bio)

Adultery

Paul Laurence Dunbar (bio)

We Wear the Mask

Stephen Dunn (bio)

Essay on the Personal
What They Wanted
A Secret Life
In Love, His Grammar Grew

Max Eastman (bio)

Diogenes

Richard Eberhart (bio)

On A Squirrel Crossing the Road in Autumn, in New England

T. S. Eliot (bio)

Preludes
Rhapsody on a Windy Night
The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
Journey of the Magi
Portrait of A Lady

Paul Eluard (bio)

Even when we sleep
I only wish to love you
The absence
Lovely and lifelike
Open door
Easy

Mihai Eminescu (bio)

And If

William Empson (bio)

Legal Fiction
Missing Dates
Aubade

Hans Magnus Enzensberger (bio)

Short History of the Bourgeosie
Middle Class Blues
A Song for Those Who Know (refrain, song)

James Fenton (bio)

In Paris With You

John Finlay (bio)

A Few Things In Themselves

Robert Frost (bio)

Birches
A Line-Storm Song (chain rhyme)

Jack Gilbert (bio)

Imagine

Dana Gioia (bio)

Thanks for Remembering Us
Prayer
The Next Poem
Entrance

Goethe (bio)

Night Thoughts
Epirrhema

Witold Gombrowicz (bio)

In progress

Louise Gluck (bio)

Tributaries
Mock Orange
Brown Circle
Landscape
Unwritten Law
Aubade
The Red Poppy
Gratitude

Robert Graves (bio)

Warning to Children (audio)
Symptoms of Love
In Broken Images

Linda Gregg (bio)

Elegance

Arthur Gregor (bio)

Les Nuits D’ete
Wind to Human Voice
Process of Recapturing
The Skipper’s Port of Call
If Only It Would Be Enough
This Once, or Once Again

Dorothea Grossman (bio)

It’s not so much that I miss you

Thom Gunn (bio)

A Map of the City

Marilyn Hacker (bio)

Ghazal: Waiting

Daniel Hall (bio)

Love-Letter-Burning

Donald Hall (bio and video bio)

The Body Politic
Without
Exile
Vilanelle
Je suis un table

Anthony Hecht (bio)

“More Light! More Light!” (read by Hecht)
The Ghost in the Martini (read by Hecht)
Double Sonnet
Death the Painter

Ernest Hemingway (bio)

Chapter Heading

George Herbert (bio)

The Flower

Robert Herrick (bio)

Delight In Disorder

Herman Hesse (bio)

Stages

Geoffrey Hill (bio)

September Song

Daryl Hine (bio)

The World is Everything That Is the Case
Riddle
Letting Go

Jane Hirschfield (bio)

Meeting the Light Completely

Tony Hoagland (bio)

Memory As a Hearing Aid
The Change (audio)

John Hollander (bio)

An Old-Fashioned Song (audio)
Swan and Shadow

A. D. Hope (bio)

Inscription for a War

Willam Hopper (bio)

Wonderland

Langston Hughes (bio)

Life Is Fine
Wake
Dream Variations
Bad-Luck Card
Cross
Daybreak in Alabama

Ted Hughes (bio)

Theology

Laurentiu Ion (bio)

Communist Habits

Laura Riding Jackson (bio)

DingDonging

Robinson Jeffers (bio)

The Beauty of Things

Fenton Johnson (bio)

Tired
The Banjo Player

James Weldon Johnson (bio)

O Southland!
The Creation: A Negro Sermon

Donald Justice (bio)

Men At Forty

Jane Kenyon (bio)

Happiness
Otherwise

Sidney Keyes (bio)

War Poet
Elegy

Rudyard Kipling (bio)

If

Galway Kinnell (bio)

After Making Love We Hear Footsteps (audio)
The Correspondence Instructor Says Goodbye to His Poetry Students
Another Night in the Ruins
Why Regret?
A Walk in the Country
Little Sleep’s-Head Sprouting Hair in the Moonlight
Wait

Barbara Kingsolver (bio)

Possession

Carolyn Kizer (bio)

Second Time Around

Kenneth Koch (bio)

One Train May Hide Another
Permanently
You Were Wearing
Variations on a Theme by William Carlos Williams
Girl and Baby Florist Sidewalk Pram Nineteen Seventy-Something
Energy in Sweden
Talking to Patrizia
To You
To Various Persons Talked To All At Once
The Boiling Water
In Love With You (audio)
You Were Wearing

Stanley Kunitz (bio)

Touch Me

Carilda Oliver Labra (bio)

Declaration of Love

Phillip Larkin (bio)

Talking in Bed
Aubade
Sad Steps

Evelyn Lau (bio)

The Mall

D. H. Lawrence (bio)

Illicit
Elemental

Irving Layton (bio)

Berry Picking

David Lehman (bio)

Mythologies (sonnet)

Denise Levertov (bio)

O Taste and See
Tenebrae
The Ache of Marriage

Mark Levine (bio)

Willow

Philip Levine (bio)

Simple Truth
Let Me Begin Again
Among Children

Enrique Lihn (bio)

Torture Chamber

Audre Lorde (bio)

Coal
Black Mother Woman
Movement Song
Walking Our Boundaries

Amy Lowell (bio)

A Decade
Patterns
The Taxi
Apology

Robert Lowell (bio)

Man and Wife
“To Speak of Woe That Is In Marriage”
History
For John Berryman
Epilogue

Isaac Luria (bio)

Poem for the Small Face

Archibald MacLeish (bio)

Ars Poetica

Mary Mackey (bio)

The Kama Sutra of Kindness: Position #2
The Kama Sutra of Kindness: Position #3

Illeana Malancioiu (bio)

Love Story

Osip Mandelstam (bio)

The Stalin Epigram
116
384
“What shall I do with this body they gave me…”

William Matthews (bio)

Nabokov’s Blues

Edouard Maunick (bio)

Carousels of the Sea

Harry Mathews (bio)

Histoire (sestina)

William Matthews (bio)

Misgivings

Robert Mazzocco (bio)

Cronus

George Marion McClellan (bio)

Dogwood Blossoms

Rod McKuen (bio)

The Coward As Hero

William Meredith (bio)

The Illiterate
Sonnet on Rare Animals
Crossing Over
Talking Back (To WH Auden)
Bachelor

James Merrill (bio)

Lost in Translation

Thomas Merton (bio)

In Silence

W.S. Merwin (bio)

Separation
Losing A Language
The Asians Dying
For A Coming Extinction
Memorandum (audio)
In the Winter of My Thirty-Eigth Year
Raiment

Calin-Andrei Mihailescu (bio)

commute to quarter centuries
paul fiction

Edna St. Vincent Millay (bio)

What Lips My Lips Have Kissed (sonnet)
If I should learn in some quiet casual way…

Czeslaw Milosz (bio)

Account
Esse
My Faithful Mother Tongue
Late Ripeness
Forget
Conversation with Jeanne
Ars Poetica

Gabriela Mistral (bio)

Rocking
The Lark (prose poem)

N. Scott Momaday (bio)

The Gift

Marianne Moore (bio)

Critics and Connisseurs

William Morris (bio)

Earth Paradise: An Apology

Les Murray (bio)

The Quality of Sprawl

Vladimir Nabokov (bio)

An Evening of Russian Poetry
Softest Tongues

Ogden Nash (bio)

So Does Everybody Else, Only Not So Much
Portrait of the Artist As A Prematurely Old Man
Just Keep Quiet and Nobody Will Notice
Possessions Are Nine Points of Conversation

Taslima Nasrin (bio)

Eve Oh Eve

Gellu Naum (bio)

Love as a literary game
At the End of the End (video, surrealism)

Howard Nemerov (bio)

A Primer of the Daily Round
To David, About His Education
Gingkoes in the Fall
Thirtieth Anniversary Report for the Class of ’41

Pablo Neruda (bio)

Sonnet LXIX (sonnet)
Ars Poetica
The Potter
Yes, Comrade, It’s the Garden Hour

John Frederick Nims (bio)

Love Poem (audio)
Blind Joy (epigram)
Days of Our Years(epigram)

Anais Nin (bio)

Risk

Henrik Nordbrandt (bio)

No Matter Where We Go
To Sleep In Your Arms (audio)
Sailing
At the Gate (audio)
An Appeal to Plumbers (audio)

Frank O’Hara (bio)

Having A Coke With You
My Heart

Sharon Olds (bio)

I Go Back to May 1937
The Space Heater
Know Nothing
True Love

Mary Oliver (bio)

The Sun
Morning Poem
Wild Geese

Wilfred Owen (bio)

Anthem for Doomed Youth
Dulce et Decorum Est
Insensibility

Herberto Padilla (bio)

Man on the Edge
Untitled

Kenneth Patchen (bio)

As We Are So Wonderfully Done With Each Other

Mervyn Peake (bio)

To Live Is Miracle Enough
The Vastest Things Are Those We May Not Learn

Gyorgy Petri (bio)

Morning Coffee
Night Song of the Personal Shadow (video)
Elegy and Dissertation

Edgar Allen Poe (bio)

Romance

Peter Porter (bio)

A Consumer’s Report
An Exequy

Ezra Pound (bio)

Portrait d’une Femme

Al Purdy (bio)

Epilogue

Frank O’Hara (bio)

Ave Maria

John Crowe Ransom (bio)

Parting, Without A Sequel
Dead Boy

Henry Reed (bio)

Lessons of the War

Ishmael Reed (bio)

I’m Running for the Office of Love

Adrienne Rich (bio)

Living In Sin
Snapshots of a Daughter-In-Law
A Valediction Forbidding Mourning
Diving Into the Wreck
The Middle-aged
Translations

Rainer Maria Rilke (bio)

“As once the winged energy of delight..”
“I love you, gentlest of ways..”
To Lou Andreas-Salome
Your first word of all was light….”

Katrina Roberts (bio)

Wind Egg
Their Flight Is Practically Silent

Robin Robertson (bio)

Dream of the Huntress

Theodore Roethke (bio)

Long Live the Weeds
My Papa’s Waltz
Dolor
The Reckoning
The Waking
Elegy for Jane
In A Dark Time
I Knew A Woman

Constantin Roman (bio)

Ode to a British Chicken

Victoria Roshe (bio)

While I read, you’re playing war nearby…”
The one and only public place where I…”

Alan Ross (bio)

Radar

Christina Rossetti (bio)

The World
Consider the Lilies of the Field

Mary Ruefle (bio)

I Remember, I Remember

Muriel Rukeyser (bio)

Night Music
Night Feeding (audio)
Effort at Speech Between Two People

Carl Sandburg (bio)

Have Me

Percy Bysshe Shelley (bio)

To Edgar Williams

Anne Sexton (bio)

Admonitions to a Special Person
With Mercy for the Greedy
For My Lover, Returning to His Wife
January 1st
Words

Charles Simic (bio)

Ambiguity’s Wedding
A Book Full of Pictures
Fear
Prodigy

Louis Simpson (bio)

American Poetry

Nicolae Sirius (bio)

Our Time

W.D. Snodgrass (bio)

Elena Ceausescu’s Bed
April Inventory
Mementos, 1

Gary Snyder (bio)

On Top

Marin Sorescu (bio)

With A Green Scarf
Perserverance

William Stafford (bio)

Adults Only
A Ritual to Read to Each Other
How These Words Happened
Keeping A Journal
Starting With Little Things
Why I Keep A Diary
You Reading This, Be Ready

Nichita Stanescu (bio)

Another Kind of Mathematics
Sentimental story
Second Elegy: The Getica

Will Stanton (bio)

Dandelions

Mark Strand (bio)

Eating Poetry
The Story of Our Lives
The Marriage
Keeping Things Whole
The End (audio)
Man and Camel

May Swenson (bio)

Cardinal Ideograms

Wislawa Szymborska (bio)

Utopia
Possibilities
The End and the Beginning
Under A Certain Little Star

Chris Tanasescu (bio)

Romania. A Post-history Hysteria

Siegfried Sassoon (bio)

“They”

Sara Teasdale (bio)

After Love
To A Loose Woman
Afterwards
Eight O’Clock (common measure)

Dylan Thomas (bio)

The Conversation of Prayer
Poem

Shu Ting (bio)

Assembly Line
Perhaps

Marina Tsvetaeva (bio)

Anti-war poetry
Poets and Prophets
Moonlit night
Revolution
Moving On

Marie Tudor (bio)

Marriage

Tristan Tzara (bio)

Domestic Sadness
L’animal cherche une maison a louer (audio)
Chanson Dada (dadaism)
Bifurcation (dadaism)

Louis Untermeyer (bio)

On the Birth of a Child
Portrait of a Machine
The Wanderer
A Marriage
Infidelity
Reveille

John Updike (bio)

Icarus

Vasile Voiculescu (bio)

Sonnet CLV
Sonnet CLXXIII

Vladimir Vysotsky (bio)

Parting with mountains

Derek Walcott (bio)

Midsummer
Preparing for Exile
Love After Love

Tom Waits (bio)

And So It Goes

Lewis Warsh (bio)

Sonnet

Emily Wheeler (bio)

Celebrate Something

Richard Wilbur (bio)

Praise in Summer
We
Love Calls Us to the Things of This World
Some Words Inside of Words

Miller Williams (bio)

Love Poem with Toast

William Carlos Williams (bio)

Marriage
Danse Russe
Queen Anne’s Lace
Flowers of August
Postlude
To Elsie (audio)
This Is Just to Say
Asphodel, That Greeny Flower: Book 1

C. D. Wright (bio)

Like A Prisoner of Soft Words
Obscurity and Selfhood

Judith Wright (bio)

Woman to Man
Eve to Her Daughters

W. B. Yeats (bio)

When You Are Old
A Coat
A Prayer for My Daughter
The Coming of Wisdom with Times
Politics
The Fascination of What’s Difficult
Ephemera

Yevgeny Yevtushenko (bio)

Hand-Rolled Cigarettes
Epistle to Neruda (epistle)

Adam Zagajewski (bio)

Your Telephone Call
Long Afternoons

A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson
A Boy’s Will by Robert Frost
Amores by DH Lawrence
Appollodor: Book 1 by Gellu Naum
Collected Poems by Rupert Brooke
Complete Poems by Emily Dickinson
Elegy with A Glass of Whiskey in Handby Crystal Bacon
Hymns and Spiritual Songsby Isaac Watts
Miscellaneous Poems by Robert Frost
New Poems by DH Lawrence
Poems by Gerald Manley Hopkins
Poems and Songs by Robert Burns
Prufrock and Other Observations by T.S. Eliot
Renascence and Other Poems by Edna St. Vincent Millay
Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters
Tender Buttons by Gertrude Stein
The Answering Voice: One Hundred Love Lyrics by Women selected by Sara Teasdale
The Book of American Negro Poetry by James Weldon Johnson
The Enormous Room by e.e. cummings
The Poetical Works by William Blake