A Man Said to the Universe

By Stephen Crane 1871–1900 Stephen Crane
A man said to the universe:
“Sir, I exist!”
“However,” replied the universe,
“The fact has not created in me
A sense of obligation.”

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Stephen Crane 1871–1900

Subjects Nature, Religion, Stars, Planets, Heavens

Poetic Terms Epigram, Free Verse

 Stephen  Crane

Biography

Stephen Crane was one of America's foremost realistic writers, and his works have been credited with marking the beginning of modern American Naturalism. His Civil War novel The Red Badge of Courage (1895) is a classic of American literature that realistically depicts the psychological complexities of fear and courage on the battlefield. Influenced by William Dean Howells's theory of realism, Crane utilized his keen . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Nature, Religion, Stars, Planets, Heavens

Poetic Terms Epigram, Free Verse

Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.