‘somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond,’ by E.E. Cummings (1931)

For copyright purposes, I will avoid printing the whole poem in the following. It is not hard to find the full text online. The poem I have selected serves me up an excuse to write about E.E. Cummings. The truth is, I have only read maybe between 10 and 20 poems by Cummings in my …

Read more‘somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond,’ by E.E. Cummings (1931)

‘The Negro Speaks of Rivers,’ by Langston Hughes (1921)

I have skirted only the edge of the American South. I haven’t myself been where the mugginess is green and the blue sky is soaked up into the waters below it. But I’ve at least been near enough to glance over the precipice. And this poem captures what feeling one might have, traversing alongside an …

Read more‘The Negro Speaks of Rivers,’ by Langston Hughes (1921)

‘Ozymandias,’ by Percy Bysshe Shelley (1817)

This is not only Shelley’s most famous poem – generally having been read or heard even by many who are not interested in literature – but it is also might be one of the most famous poems in the English language. As such, I do want to write a bit about it, rather than avoid …

Read more‘Ozymandias,’ by Percy Bysshe Shelley (1817)

‘Law,’ by W.H. Auden (September, 1939)

Quick preface: for copyright purposes, I will not be including the entire text of this poem. Besides, it is a bit long. This essay should motivate people to read the original poem in full. The bibliographical reference to it is as follows: W.H. Auden: Selected Poems, edited by Edward Mendelson. New York: Vintage Books, 1989. …

Read more‘Law,’ by W.H. Auden (September, 1939)

“All Day I Hear the Noise of Waters,” James Joyce (1907)

All day I hear the noise of waters Making moan, Sad as the sea-bird is, when going Forth alone, He hears the winds cry to the waters’ Monotone. The grey winds, the cold winds are blowing Where I go. I hear the noise of many waters Far below. All day, all night, I hear them …

Read more“All Day I Hear the Noise of Waters,” James Joyce (1907)

‘The Kraken,’ by Alfred Lord Tennyson (1830)

Below the thunders of the upper deep, Far, far beneath in the abysmal sea, His ancient, dreamless, uninvaded sleep The Kraken sleepeth: faintest sunlights flee About his shadowy sides; above him swell Huge sponges of millennial growth and height; And far away into the sickly light, From many a wondrous grot and secret cell Unnumbered …

Read more‘The Kraken,’ by Alfred Lord Tennyson (1830)

‘The Voice of the Rain’ by Walt Whitman (1885)

And who art thou? said I to the soft-falling shower, Which, strange to tell, gave me an answer, as here translated: I am the Poem of Earth, said the voice of the rain, Eternal I rise impalpable out of the land and the bottomless sea, Upward to heaven, whence, vaguely form’d, altogether changed, and yet …

Read more‘The Voice of the Rain’ by Walt Whitman (1885)