Core Learning Poems

61 to 75 of 75 Poems
  • By John Keats
    Poem Guide

    Fall is in the air. So we are reminded here in the Northern Hemisphere, by the arrival of back-to-school catalogs and tiny inedible gourds littering the desks of teachers and bank tellers. No matter how far we are from our...

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  • By John Clare
    Poem Guide

    Some poets use verse to praise relatives who share their first or last names: John Dryden’s “To My Honored Kinsman, John Driden,” for example, begins “How blessed is he, who leads a Country Life, / Unvexed with anxious Cares, and...

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  • By Anne Bradstreet
    Poem Guide

    On an icy November afternoon in 1637, in the thatch-roofed Cambridge meetinghouse of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, 40 magistrates sat ready to pass judgment on a woman whom they believed posed the gravest threat yet to the fragile social and...

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  • By Agha Shahid Ali
    Poem Guide

    There are no instant classics, but Agha Shahid Ali’s ghazal “Tonight” comes close: appearing in three versions between 1997 and 2003, this version, which is the poem’s last and longest incarnation, gave its title to Ali’s posthumously published Call Me...

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  • By Charlotte Mew
    Poem Guide

    Once I had to get along with some people who could never agree on anything. Then our neighbor cut down a tree. Instantly we united in mourning. It is irresistible to identify with trees. Tall emblems of endurance, they possess...

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  • By John Ciardi
    Poem Guide

    John Ciardi devised the form of the trenta-sei (thirty-six, in Italian) in 1985. It had its first publication after his death in the 1989 volume Echoes: Poems Left Behind. One wouldn’t expect the form to have worked its way into...

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  • By César Vallejo
    Poem Guide

    The Peruvian poet César Vallejo was born in Santiago de Chuco in 1892, the last of eleven children. Disapproving of the Catholic orthodoxy of his youth, he became a Marxist and an anti-Fascist, and he actively supported the revolution in...

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  • By John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester
    Poem Guide

    Jerry Seinfeld wasn’t the first to make a big show about nothing; nor was the notorious 17th-century figure John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester, the first writer to choose “nothing” as his subject. Traditions of paradoxical, funny poems and speeches on...

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  • By John Donne
    Poem Guide

    John Donne probably wrote “A Valediction: of Weeping” after he met his future wife, Ann More, and before he took holy orders and turned most of his authorial energies to sermons and spiritual meditations. We can’t be sure about the...

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  • By James Merrill
    Poem Guide

    James Merrill wrote “The Victor Dog” in the fall of 1969, in Nambé Pueblo, New Mexico, outside Santa Fe. There he had rented an adobe cottage for some months to be close to a painter-friend, David McIntosh. The romance Merrill...

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  • By Hart Crane
    Poem Guide

    “Love you!”
    “Mean it!”
    —Exchange overheard in a West Hollywood SafewayIn 1923, Hart Crane (1899–1932) met a blond, blue-eyed Danish sailor named Emil Opffer. He fell crazily, blissfully in love. Like any wordsmith worth a red cent, he...

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  • By Philip Larkin
    Poem Guide

    Although Philip Larkin turned down the office of Britain’s poet laureate following the death of John Betjeman in 1984 (it ended up going to Ted Hughes), Larkin had already inherited Betjeman’s cultural place in Britain and was one of the...

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  • By Elinor Wylie
    Poem Guide

    A wild peach’s sweetness is easy to savor. It grows spontaneously; its discovery feels providential, a reward for one who strays from the path. But a peach essentially is a human creation, the product of years of rigorous cultivation. Wild...

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  • By Gerard Manley Hopkins
    Poem Guide

    I fell in love with “The Windhover” when I was a teenager, recognizing right away the rapture of a love poem directed not at a particular person (though the poem is dedicated “To Christ our Lord”) but to life itself....

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  • By Lucille Clifton
    Poem Guide

    The making of a poem is a lot like the making of a self: it requires awareness, understanding, and a willingness to consider how we’re shaped by our cultural context, our influences, and our language. A poem about the making...

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61 to 75 of 75 Poems

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