blupete's Poetry Passages


"I have said that poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings; it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquility; the emotion is contemplated till, by a species of re-action, the tranquility gradually disappears, and an emotion, kindred to that which was the subject of contemplation, is gradually produced, and does itself actually exist in the mind." (Wordsworth.)

Of The Sea Of Philosophy Of Age
Of Solitude Of Nature Of The North
Of Life Of Death Of Leisure
Drinking Songs Of Love Of Man
Of Children Of Poets


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Introduction [TOC]

"It may not be a downright duty to like poetry, or to try to like it; but certainly it is a misfortune that so large and lovely a division of the world's literature should be lost to any reader. The absence of a poetic taste is a sad indication of a lack of the imaginative faculty; and without imagination what is life?" (Charles Richardson, 1775-1865.)
Generally, I might say, that a person, for whatever reason, is not normally able to communicate his feelings; and this, is one of the principal reasons that poetry appeals to those who struggle with their own personal expression.
Sir James Fitzjames Stephen dealt with the point:
"It seems to me that we are spirits in prison, able only to make signals to each other, but with a world of things to think and to say which our signals cannot describe at all... [that] our language on the deepest of all deep things is so poor and unsatisfactory, and why poetry sometimes seems to say more than logic. The essence of poetry is that it is an appeal to the hearer's or reader's good faith and power of perception." [Liberty, Equality, Fraternity (1873).]
Children are poets; they have imagination, they can see a fairyland in the broken bits of a broken toy or in a ragged company of broken-nosed dolls. Poetry is "a metrical composition ... expressing facts, thoughts, or feelings in poetical form; a piece of poetry. ... critics have generally held that in order to deserve the name of poem, the theme and its treatment must possess qualities which raise it above the level of ordinary prose." (OED.) Basil De Selincourt (the Wordsworthian expert, b.1876) thought that the inspiration to write poetry comes "from a vision of concealed significances." Though poetry is a written composition, the poet is not entirely conscious of the process: poetry arises in the breast of a man, like a gentle mist, delicately and of itself: it arises from a person who possesses an investigating intellect and has a command of language: it arises from one who is fully engaged in life. A moment of inspiration comes usually when the poet has detached himself: and from his brooding imagination springs forth a piece of his or her spirit, a poem.

Coleridge in his notebook (he kept one always at his ready reach and filled up many of them in his life time) was to write this: "A great Poet must be ... a profound Metaphysician ... he must have the ear of a wild Arab listening in the silent Desert, the eye of a North American Indian tracing the footsteps of an Enemy upon the Leaves that strew the Forest --; the Touch of a Blind Man feeling the face of a beloved child."

Poems of The Sea [TOC]

"Dover Beach" - Arnold
"Break, Break, Break" - Tennyson
"Christmas at Sea" - Stevenson
"Sun and Shadow" - Holmes
"Wreck of the Hesperus" - Longfellow
"Sea-Fever" - Masefield
"Ship’s Helm" - Whitman
"Ship Starting" - Whitman
"After the Sea-Ship" - Whitman
"City of Ships" - Whitman
"The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" - Coleridge

Poems of Age [TOC]
"To The Virgins" - Herrick
"To His Coy Mistress" - Marvell
"The Dying Man in His Garden" - George Sewell
"So, We'll Go no More a Roving" - Byron

Poems of Philosophy [TOC]
"Pitiful Souls of Men!" - Lucretius
"Globed from the Atoms" - Lucretius
"Mistress of Vision" - Francis Thompson
"Ode on a Grecian Urn" - John Keats
"The Mystic Song" - Emerson
"Stanzas from the Kasidah" - Burton
"The Chambered Nautilus" - Holmes
"The Unfathomable Sea" - Stevenson
"The Village Blacksmith" - Longfellow
"A Torch of Smoky Pine" - Santayana.
"The Walrus and the Carpenter" - Lewis Carroll.
"Abou Ben Adhem" - Leigh Hunt.

Poems of Solitude [TOC]
"A Visit from the Sea" - Stevenson.
"The South Country" - Belloc.

Poems About Nature [TOC]
"Daffodils" - Wordsworth.
"The Rainbow" - Wordsworth.
"Ode To A Nightingale" - Keats.
"A River" - Tennyson.
"Leisure" - Davies.
"The Seasons: Late Fall" - Bridges.
"To The Cuckoo" - Wordsworth.
"To A Butterfly" - Wordsworth.
"Indian Summer" - Campbell.
"An Indian Summer Carol" - Fidelis.
"Ode to the West Wind" - Shelley.
"Tintern Abbey" - Wordsworth.
"Trees" - Kilmer.

Poems Of The North [TOC]
"The Shooting of Dan McGrew" - Service.
"The Cremation of Sam McGee" - Service.
"The Fool" - Service.

Poems About Life [TOC]
"The Scholar Gipsy" - Arnold
"Life" - Bacon
"In A Brazen Prison We Live" - Birrell.
"A Wish" - Cowley.
"They Are Not Long" - Dowson.
"Invictus" - Henley.
"If" - Kipling.
"A Psalm of Life" - Longfellow.
"Revolutions" - Shakespeare.
"Ozymandias" - Shelley.
"Character of a Happy Life" - Wotton.

Poems About Death [TOC]
"A Graveyard" - Walter De La Mare.
"Elegy Written in a Country Church-Yard" - Thomas Gray
"The Epitaph" - Thomas Gray
"To a Poet a Thousand Years Hence" - James Elroy Flecker.
"We Who Part Shall Meet Again" - Rossetti.
"The Terror of Death" - John Keats
"Requiem" - Stevenson
"Death the Leveller" - Shirley

Poems Of Leisure [TOC]
"The Lotos-eaters" - Tennyson.

Drinking Songs [TOC]
"Here's to the Maiden ..." - Sheridan.

Poems Of Love [TOC]
"Love's Philosophy" - Shelley
"Her Lover's Arm" - Tennyson
"How Do I Love Thee?" - Browning.
"Beauty" - Masefield.
"On Leaving" - Donne.
"You Remain" - Symons.
"Love's Silken Wings" - Longfellow.
"Love's Trouble" - de Maistre.
"The Moment Love Begins" - Longfellow.
"A Birthday" - Christina Rossetti.
"Bonnie Doon" - Robert Burns.
"Present In Absence" - Anonymous.
"Jenny Kissed Me" - Leigh Hunt.

Poems Of The Nature of Man [TOC]
"Of Man" - Pope.

Of Children [TOC]
"The Owl And The Pussy-Cat" - Lear.

Poems About Poets [TOC]
"Shakespeare" - Arnold



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Peter Landry