#WorldPoetryDay: Revisit The Most Memorable Lines From The World’s Most Celebrated Poems

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  • On World Poetry Day we pay tribute to some brilliant poets who penned poignant and lyrical lines of verse

    Behold, our edit of lyrical lines penned by brilliant minds. From Sylvia Plath’s longing dream reflections to Maya Angelou’s empowered rally cry – these poignant verses are for reading out loud, reflecting on and committing to memory.

    Hope Is The Thing With Feathers, Emily Dickinson
    Hope is the thing with feathers
    That perches in the soul,
    And sings the tune without the words,
    And never stops at all,

    Sonnet 116, William Shakespeare
    Love is not love
    Which alters when it alteration finds,
    Or bends with the remover to remove.
    O no, it is an ever-fixed mark
    That looks on tempests and is never shaken;

    I Carry Your Heart With Me, EE Cummings

    here is the deepest secret nobody knows
    (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
    and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
    higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
    and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
    i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)

    Expect Nothing, Alice Walker
    Wish for nothing larger
    Than your own small heart
    Or greater than a star;
    Tame wild disappointment
    With caress unmoved and cold
    Make of it a parka
    For your soul.
    Sylvia Plath

    The Collected Poems, Sylvia Plath
    I dreamed that you bewitched me into bed
    And sung me moon-struck, kissed me quite insane.
    (I think I made you up inside my head.)

    Birthday Letters, Ted Hughes
    Nobody wanted your dance,
    Nobody wanted your strange glitter, your floundering
    Drowning life and your effort to save yourself,
    Treading water, dancing the dark turmoil,
    Looking for something to give.

    If, Rudyard Kipling
    If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run –
    Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
    And – which is more – you’ll be a Man my son!

    How Do I Love Thee?, Elizabeth Barrett Browning
    How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. 
    I love thee to the depth and breadth and height 
    My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight 
    For the ends of being and ideal grace.

    Maya Angelou

    Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
    The span of my hips,
    The stride of my step,
    The curl of my lips.
    I’m a woman
    Phenomenally.
    Phenomenal woman,
    That’s me.

    These I Can Promise, Mark Twain
    I can promise all my heart’s devotion;
    A smile to chase away your tears of sorrow;
    A love that’s true and ever growing;
    A hand to hold in your’s through each tomorrow.

    Late Fragment, Raymond Carver,
    And did you get what
    you wanted from this life, even so?
    I did.
    And what did you want?
    To call myself beloved,
    to feel myself
    beloved on the earth.

    Words, Wide Night, Carol Ann Duffy
    Somewhere on the other side of this wide night
    and the distance between us, I am thinking of you.
    The room is turning slowly away from the moon.

    Margaret Atwood

    The Moment, Margaret Atwood

    The moment when, after many years
    of hard work and a long voyage
    you stand in the centre of your room,
    house, half-acre, square mile, island, country,
    knowing at last how you got there,
    and say, I own this,

    Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas


    Do not go gentle into that good night,
    Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light. 

    Oh Yes, Charles Bukowski
    there are worse things than
    being alone
    but it often takes decades
    to realize this
    and most often 
    when you do
    it’s too late
    and there’s nothing worse
    than 
    too late.

    The Complete Poems, Anne Sexton


    Watch out for intellect,
    because it knows so much it knows nothing
    and leaves you hanging upside down,
    mouthing knowledge as your heart
    falls out of your mouth.

    Right, all we need to do now is find someone to quote this stuff to…

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