Writers Write is a comprehensive writing resource and we have included 17 of the most powerful excerpts from poetry in this post.
I have chosen some of my favourite lines of poetry to celebrate World Poetry Day, which is celebrated on 21 March each year. These are lines that I find powerful, moving, and poignant.
[If you want to write poetry, you may enjoy this series on the craft:
- Poetry 101: What Is A Poem?
- Poetry 101: How To Analyse A Poem
- Poetry 101: Creating Figurative Language Using Literary Devices
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems – The Sonnet
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems – The Haiku
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems – Free Verse
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems – The Limerick
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems – The Villanelle
- Poetry 101: Kinds Of Poems: The Ballad]
17 Powerful Excerpts From Poetry
Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? ~Mary Oliver She walks in beauty, like the night Of cloudless climes and starry skies; And all that’s best of dark and bright Meet in her aspect and her eyes… ~Lord Byron He was my North, my South, my East and West. My working week and my Sunday rest. My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song. I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong. ~W.H. Auden Turning and turning in the widening gyre The falcon cannot hear the falconer; Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere The ceremony of innocence is drowned. The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity. ~W.B. Yeats Dying is an art. Like everything else, I do it exceptionally well. I do it so it feels like hell. I do it so it feels real. I guess you could say I have a call. ~Sylvia Plath 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. ~Dylan Thomas Hope is the thing with feathers That perches in the soul, And sings the tune without the words, And never stops at all ~Emily Dickinson Sometimes it takes darkness and the sweet confinement of your aloneness to learn anything or anyone that does not bring you alive is too small for you. ~David Whyte For last year’s words belong to last year’s language And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning. ~T.S. Eliot Time does not bring relief; you all have lied Who told me time would ease me of my pain! I miss him in the weeping of the rain; I want him at the shrinking of the tide; The old snows melt from every mountain-side, And last year’s leaves are smoke in every lane; But last year’s bitter loving must remain. ~Edna St. Vincent Millay so I wait for you like a lonely house till you will see me again and live in me. Till then my windows ache. ~Pablo Neruda I will remember the kisses our lips raw with love and how you gave me everything you had and how I offered you what was left of me. ~Charles Bukowski to live in this world you must be able to do three things to love what is mortal; to hold it against your bones knowing your own life depends on it; and, when the time comes to let it go, to let it go ~Mary Oliver I carry your heart with me (I carry it in my heart) I am never without it (anywhere I go you go,my dear; and whatever is done by only me is your doing,my darling) ~ee cummings As it has been said: Love and a cough cannot be concealed. Even a small cough. Even a small love. ~Anne Sexton We were so wholly one I had not thought That we could die apart. I had not thought That I could move,—and you be stiff and still! That I could speak,—and you perforce be dumb! I think our heart-strings were, like warp and woof In some firm fabric, woven in and out; Your golden filaments in fair design Across my duller fibre. ~Edna St. Vincent Millay I carry you with me into the world, into the smell of rain & the words that dance between people & for me, it will always be this way, walking in the light, remembering being alive together ~Brian Andreas