Poem Sampler

Back to School Poems

School Supplies? Don't forget the poems!

by The Editors
Back to School Poems
Mark McGinnis

Students and teachers everywhere, from grade school to college, are dreading the first day of school. Need a pick-me-up poem for those first-day butterflies? Worried about the not getting picked for intramurals? Got a secret crush and need to slip him or her a sure fire note? Need a novel way to interest beach-burned brains of middle-school students in science? You’ll find solace, comfort, answers, and poems to woo anybody in these back-to-school lists of poems. 

Ten Poems to Read When You Get Stuffed in Your Locker by Caitlin Kimball

1. “I Am!” by John Clare
John Clare was a malnourished, dirt-poor alcoholic, confined for decades to an insane asylum when they were still called insane asylums. . . .

Ten Poems to Get You Through Science Class This Year by Karen Glenn

1. “Winter Trees” by William Carlos Williams
Deciduous trees, “attiring” and “disattiring,” are the main characters in this short poem. Just why do these “wise trees” shed their leaves in the autumn? . . .

Ten Poems to Send the Person You're Crushing On by Becca Klaver

1. “Sonnets from the Portuguese 7: The Face” by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
If Barrett Browning sounds as though she’s claiming in this poem that love saved her life, it’s because it did. . . .

Ten Poems Students Love to Read Out Loud by Eileen Murphy

1. “They Flee from Me” by Sir Thomas Wyatt
What can attitude tell us? To help students find out, begin by asking who owns the action of each stanza in this poem. This will help a performer trace the speaker’s transformation from line to line and stanza to stanza. . . .
Originally Published: August 31, 2006


On August 29, 2009 at 9:47am Felipe Barreda wrote:
The early morning glow of the dawn
bathed the young youth in light
looking beyond the pale glow
of a ticking clock with sight.
No more summer fun for the fawn.
We make are march towards winter's
Learning our times table and ABCs
and what lives below the rolling seas.
We make our march towards the dark
towards the schoolhouse on the hill.
Our teacher look grim and stark,
as the rain beats down the window sill
but like all things that come and go
I see my life ahead of me.
Onward I march beyond the snow,
Towards summer break I march with

On September 2, 2009 at 3:31am Bilal Muhammad wrote:
editor, stat!

On September 2, 2009 at 12:11pm Lori George Alexander wrote:
I would think whether or not one is starting school the above poems are nice to have around for any occasions. Poetry is nice all of the time of course but especially nice when alone when one is contemplating the universe and other such small things like that.

On March 19, 2010 at 5:51pm kacee wrote:
school is great and so is god but you gotta enjoy the little things

On May 6, 2010 at 4:38pm selena puglas wrote:
i love all of these poems their so good!

On September 12, 2010 at 10:40am Tracy & Joe TAylor wrote:
Nice way to start school year.


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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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