What is your favourite poem, and why?

submitted by Bluetreefrog

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SharkEatingBreakfast , edited

I think about this often.

I do not belong here.


I was looking for this one I never was much of a poem person but this one. I love this one


It is one of the most bittersweet things I've ever read.

Really resonates with me in a huge way. Gets me *every* time.


Strange poem, kinda sad. I liked it, It gave me chills reading it. Do you know who the author is?


The author is Laura Gilpin.


Thanks c:


This reminds me of The Four Leaved Clover

Beware that four leaved clovers can also be seen as a sign of good luck.

EndOfLine , edited

Invictus by William Ernst Henley

When I was younger I clung to it's message of perseverance. It ended up being the first poem that I ever memorized.

Out of the night that covers me
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance,
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate
I am the captain of my soul.

I was just trying to remember this today, thank you!


Dolce et Decorum est - Wilfred Owen. A grim, anti-war masterpiece written by a soldier fighting in the trenches in WW1

Ozymandias - Percy Shelley. A reminder of human transience and hubris

Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night - Dylan Thomas. Helps me to endure when things seem bleak or hopeless.


I really like all of Wlfred Owen's work. So fucking sad. And I dont mean just the poetry but his life. When I found about him I read his biography and it made me cry a little. You probably already know this but not only did he fought and wrote his poetry in the first WW but he also died there with only 25 years. Just writing this Im starting to tear up, trully heartbreaking.

khannie , edited

Subh Milis (Sweet jam). It's a short and powerful Irish poem reminding parents to be kind to their kids.

English translation below. Can't seem to get the formatting correct on mobile...

Bhí subh milis ar bháscrann an doras

ach mhúch mé an corraí

ionaim a d’éirigh

mar smaoinigh mé ar an lá

a bheadh an bháscrann glan

agus an lámh beag – ar iarraidh…”

There was jam on the door handle

But I quelled the anger

That rose inside me

Because I thought of the day

That the handle would be clean

And the little hand - longed for

🇰 🔵 🇱 🇦 🇳 🇦 🇰 ℹ️ , edited

Where The Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein.


I also love Masks by Shel.


It's not DNS,
There’s no way it’s DNS,
It was DNS


This hurts to read :-(.


I really like the Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Coleridge. I first encountered it as a result of reading Douglas Adams' Dirk Gently novels, but one day I saw the original in the library and just read it from start to finish. It's fantastic, so weird, so compelling.

I also like his Kubla Khan, the imagery of the "caverns measureless to man" and the "sunless sea" have always stuck with me.



A man said to the universe:
“Sir, I exist!”
“However,” replied the universe,
“The fact has not created in me
A sense of obligation.”

Written in like the 1890s. So straight forward. Feels modern.


If-, by Rudyard Kipling.

Different stanzas of the poem have given me strengths through different challenges and I keep coming back to it.


Mark Strand - Keeping things whole. It helps me deal with depression. I find it very soothing when I'm feeling down. It's one of the few I know by heart.


I'm partial to To make a prairie by Emily Dickinson:

To make a prairie it takes a clover 
      and one bee,
One clover, and a bee.
And revery.
The revery alone will do,
If bees are few.

I enjoy the simplicity. Also, there's a great choir setting by Rudolf Escher which I really enjoy.


Ozymandias, because it's one of the very few I've read, and I liked it.


I can't remember the number but it's a sonnet by (of course) Shakespeare but it's the one where he's ruminating about how he's eventually going to die.

It starts off by comparing the fleeting short existence of a person to the summer season.


Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? (18)


This Bread I Break by Dylan Thomas

It’s a short, beautiful poem that laments man’s destructive relationship with nature.


Porphyria's Lover by Robert Browning just rolled around in my head for day after I first read it. It’s really dark but feels so completely human at the same time.



I love Robert Browning. Love Among the Ruins has always been my favorite, although I'm not sure why. I honestly don't think it's his best work.


Not particularly original, but I’m a sucker for William Blake. I love a neurodivergent radical. And I’m also am not particularly well read in poetry, so if there are any other poets that fit that description I always love to hear about more!

The Tyger is probably my favorite of his. I can feel the rhythm of it in my heart, and it’s made so much more tangible in its fear and awe when you know that he wrote it after seeing a young man killed by a tiger.

young_broccoli , edited

Futility by Wilfred Owen.

Im not really too much into poetry, Im more of a song person, so obviously I found about it through a song that uses the poem as lyrics. I think I somewhat relate to to it, the feeling of futility expressed in it, even tho I havent seen the horrors he must have seen. All of his poetry is quite good, and it was written during WWI and from the trenches which makes it way more powerfull and sad IMO

I also like The Sleeper by Edgar A. Poe but that its mostly because I was a bit of a goth kid and its also been turned into a song

reversebananimals , edited

Li Bai - Quiet Night Thought

床前明月光\ 疑是地上霜\ 举头望明月\ 低头思故乡

Before my bed bright moonlight pools\ Almost like frost on the ground\ Raising my head I see the shining moon\ Bowing my head I think of home


Teeny tiny axolotl

There is really not a lotl

Of you. Not a jot or tittle

So I'll call you axolitl

— anon

stoned_ape , edited

A Supermarket in California by Ginsberg. Idk why it just always has stuck with me


Richard Cory

A surprising poem on a dark subject matter. Perhaps one of the best poems that demonstrate how mysterious other people are and how hard it is to truly connect with strangers.

Kalcifer , edited

"The View From Halfway Down" by Alison Tifel has always resonated with me:

The weak breeze whispers nothing
The water screams sublime
His feet shift, teeter-totter
Deep breath, stand back, it’s time

Toes untouch the overpass
Soon he’s water bound
Eyes locked shut but peek to see
The view from halfway down

A little wind, a summer sun
A river rich and regal
A flood of fond endorphins
Brings a calm that knows no equal

You’re flying now
You see things much more clear than from the ground
It’s all okay, it would be
Were you not now halfway down

Thrash to break from gravity
What now could slow the drop
All I’d give for toes to touch
The safety back at top

But this is it, the deed is done
Silence drowns the sound
Before I leaped I should’ve seen
The view from halfway down

I really should’ve thought about
The view from halfway down
I wish I could’ve known about
The view from halfway down




Yeah, Alison Tifel wrote the episode "The View From Halfway Down", which is what this poem is from and shares the same name with.


We Wear the Mask by Paul Lawrence Dunbar. I remember reading it in middle school. Poetry hadn’t done much for me at that point of my life but that one got through to me and helped me appreciate the medium much more in general


Ulysses by Alfred, Lord Tennyson. It always struck me as both humble and proud and it only becomes more meaningful as I age.



"No te salves " from Mario Benedetti. It's beautiful in Spanish. Does not translate well to English but here it is



The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost

morphballganon , edited

That's the first one that popped into my mind upon reading the question.

Then there's this bad boy:



because it messes with my brain just righght

Akasazh , edited

Baudelaire- la beauté

It's a beautifully worded sonnet on the nature of beauty, but meta as in how the poet is swayed by it and how he both loves that and is annoyed by the ease with with he's enthralled


I find it almost impossible to pick a favorite poem of hers, but if I had to it'd probably be "Tutaj" ("Here" in English) by Wislawa Szymborska.


"Starvation Camp Near Jaslo" and "Foraminifera" are two other favorites and Clare Cavanagh and Stanislaw Baranczak have done an amazing job at the translations.


"The Chaos"

Because English will fuck you up.


No man is an island, Entire of itself. Each is a piece of the continent, A part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less. As well as if a promontory were. As well as if a manor of thine own Or of thine friend’s were. Each man’s death diminishes me, For I am involved in mankind. Therefore, send not to know For whom the bell tolls, It tolls for thee.


Oh freddled gruntbuggly,
Thy micturitions are to me,
As plurdled gabbleblotchits,
On a lurgid bee,

That mordiously hath blurted out,
Its earted jurtles,
Into a rancid festering confectious organ squealer. [drowned out by moaning and screaming]

Now the jurpling slayjid agrocrustles,
Are slurping hagrilly up the axlegrurts,
And living glupules frart and slipulate,
Like jowling meated liverslime,

Groop, I implore thee, my foonting turling dromes,
And hooptiously drangle me,
With crinkly bindlewurdles,
Or else I shall rend thee in the gobberwarts with my blurglecruncheon,

See if I don't.

-- Prostetnic Vogon Jeltz

So wie die Ordnung stets in Chaos geht,
wenn keine Kraft dagegen steht,
so herrscht das Chaos nie allein:
Es braucht die Ordnung, um zu sein.
Das Chaos, das sich selbst bezwingt,
indem es langsam Ordnung bringt,
gebiert aus Dunkelheit und Dreck
schön langsam, aber stetig, Form und Zweck,
kurz: Leben, das sich selbst erhält,
und auch im Sturme Kraft behält,
um nach dem Regen neu zu blühn,
so wie auch wir es alle tun.
Splount , edited

As I walked out one evening by W.H. Auden


Or for the lazy who want to hear the poet himself read it:

The why is that long ago, when I was in college in Maine, my girlfriend's English step-dad read it to his wife after attempting to prove he was American by driving their VW Jetta around the garden in the snow. Alcohol was involved and when everyone assembled finally convinced Tony to come back inside, an English teacher friend compelled him to read a poem as proof that he had come to terms with the car stuck in the snow out back. A life-long fan of Auden he chose As I Walked Out One Evening. As it opens, the imagery and fantastic feats of love are obviously spoken by a young man, but "time coughs when you would kiss" signalling that "time will have his fancy, tomorrow or today." You can break down what it means to you but the undeniably great lines I continue to quote on a weekly basis, albeit in my head so as not to annoy others. As I get older I stare in the basin and wonder what I've missed, but I also know that I will love my best friend, and wife 'till the salmon sing in the street.


I like these two a lot. Mainly because they're the only two that stuck with me.




Rainer Maria Rilke
Der Panther/ The Panther.
(I don't really feel the english translation does the poem justice. In german the words create a certain rhythm, nearly like a melody, that I find utterly enchanting)

_His gaze against the sweeping of the bars has grown so weary, it can hold no more. To him, there seem to be a thousand bars and back behind those thousand bars no world.

The soft the supple step and sturdy pace, that in the smallest of all circles turns, moves like a dance of strength around a core in which a mighty will is standing stunned.

Only at times the pupil’s curtain slides up soundlessly — . An image enters then, goes through the tensioned stillness of the limbs — and in the heart ceases to be._

----- The original German‐------

_Sein Blick ist vom Vorübergehn der Stäbe so müd geworden, daß er nichts mehr hält. Ihm ist, als ob es tausend Stäbe gäbe und hinter tausend Stäben keine Welt.

Der weiche Gang geschmeidig starker Schritte, der sich im allerkleinsten Kreise dreht, ist wie ein Tanz von Kraft um eine Mitte, in der betäubt ein großer Wille steht.

Nur manchmal schiebt der Vorhang der Pupille sich lautlos auf –. Dann geht ein Bild hinein, geht durch der Glieder angespannte Stille – und hört im Herzen auf zu sein._

[deleted] , edited

Schiller's song of the Bell is his longest poem, a 430 stanza epic about building a church bell that describes the process in technical detail and uses it as a metaphor for society. Here's an English translation:

My favorite poem is the condensed version. Loosely translated:

dig a hole
pour bronze in
bell is done
ding dong ding

unn , edited
Little potato when it is born
Spreads its branches on the ground
Little girl when she sleeps
Puts her hand on her heart

I am tiny
The size of a button
I carry daddy in my pocket
And mommy in my heart

The pocket got a hole
And daddy fell on the ground
Mommy who is the dearest
Stayed in my heart

Heh, my lemmy client is formatting this poem like it’s SQL code



By William Blake

I wander thro' each charter'd street,

Near where the charter'd Thames does flow. 

And mark in every face I meet

Marks of weakness, marks of woe.

In every cry of every Man,

In every Infants cry of fear,

In every voice: in every ban,

The mind-forg'd manacles I hear 

How the Chimney-sweepers cry

Every blackning Church appalls, 

And the hapless Soldiers sigh

Runs in blood down Palace walls 

But most thro' midnight streets I hear

How the youthful Harlots curse

Blasts the new-born Infants tear 

And blights with plagues the Marriage hearse 


How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood.

How much shit could a dipshit dip if a dipshit could dip shit.


There was a young lady from Venus, Whose body was shaped like a - *DATA!*

-Star Trek TNG & Picard

recapitated , edited

Here I sit, same as ever. Took a dump, pulled the lever. The toilet clogged. The water flowed. Look out world, it's a motherload!.

Why is it my favorite? I have no idea... Probably because I'm awful.


Billy Connolly's "Mary Rose"

Mary Rose
Sat on a pin
Mary rose


Pale Fire, because I'm a try hard poser I think