Not Boring Poems
Poetry is an artform no doubt. But I've always had a hard time appreciating it as much as I felt that I should. So I set out on a mission to find poetry that I would enjoy (or fail and never bother with it again).
I rummaged through the classics and eventually among the masses of lyrical words in weird compositions, I found little gems. Here are some of my favorites.
I think having poetry narrated ads a lot to the experience, so I will link some videos narrated by Tom O'Bedlam next to the poems.
I met a traveller 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 on 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.
- "Ozymandias" by by Percy Bysshe Shelley
Ozymandias is an awesome comment on the state of flux that everything is in. The passage of time will remove anything no matter how powerful or important it might seem now.
Just consider that where you're sitting right now thousands of destinies played out through the ages, people lived, loved and died on that little plot of land where you live.
And you know absolutely nothing about them they're all forgotten. And so will you be in a few generations.
Tyger Tyger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?
In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare sieze the fire?
And what shoulder, & what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?
What the hammer? what the chain,
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp,
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?
When the stars threw down their spears
And water'd heaven with their tears;
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?
Tyger, Tyger burning bright
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?
- "The Tyger" William Blake
Just imagine the first time a human being encountered a Tiger in the wild.
Can anything else be so deadly, beautiful and graceful at the same time. Don't worry about finding a tiger, it'll find you hidden among the trees with perfect camouflage.
Look at your domestic house cat, it's death incarnate for a rodent or unsuspecting bird.
- "The Raven" by Edgar Allen Poe
This poem is so long that I will not quote the text here.
"The Raven" is a whole story about a guy that is working in his study late at night, when a Raven comes.
But is it a Raven or a long lost love? Or is he going crazy and there's no Raven at all?
Awesome rhymes and a great short story!
Whenever Richard Cory went down town,
We people on the pavement looked at him:
He was a gentleman from sole to crown,
Clean favored, and imperially slim.
And he was always quietly arrayed,
And he was always human when he talked;
But still he fluttered pulses when he said,
"Good-morning," and he glittered when he walked.
And he was rich—yes, richer than a king—
And admirably schooled in every grace:
In fine, we thought that he was everything
To make us wish that we were in his place.
So on we worked, and waited for the light,
And went without the meat, and cursed the bread;
And Richard Cory, one calm summer night,
Went home and put a bullet through his head.
"Richard Cory" by Edward Arlington Robinson
This poem reminds me of a famous man by the name of Mads Holger in the country where I recide.
He was always impeccably dressed, good looking and well-articulated. He spent a lifetime cultivating an upper-class image. He killed himself out of the blue in 2015 at age 38. He left no note.
Everyone fights their own demons.
"If" by Rudyard Kipling
This is how to live put into verse as advice from father to son. It's good advice and it's a great poem.
Stopping by woods on a snowy evening
"Stopping by woods on a snowy evening" by Robert Frost
Some moments in life are beautiful in their simplicity. Revel in them before they're gone and cherish them forever.
That's it. That's the post. There's nothing here now but dust and sand.