You can have a hard time reading people and forming meaningful relationships with them.
Maybe you can figure out how to communicate with other people if you read enough poems.
This can also help you learn to empathize with people and understand their perspectives, two skills crucial to building a peaceful community.
Poems contribute to societal growth because they provide an outlet for people to deal with their issues and gain emotional freedom from the judgment of others.
Here are 25 good poems to give you more insight and connection to life.
Poems About Reflecting On Life
1. My Life Was The Size Of My Life – Jane Hirshfield
My life was the size of my life.
Its rooms were room-sized,
its soul was the size of a soul.
In its background, mitochondria hummed,
above it sun, clouds, snow,
the transit of stars and planets.
It rode elevators, bullet trains,
various airplanes, a donkey.
It wore socks, shirts, its own ears and nose.
It ate, it slept, it opened
and closed its hands, its windows.
Others, I know, had lives larger.
Others, I know, had lives shorter.
The depth of lives, too, is different.
There were times my life and I made jokes together.
There were times we made bread.
Once, I grew moody and distant.
I told my life I would like some time,
I would like to try seeing others.
In a week, my empty suitcase and I returned.
I was hungry, then, and my life,
my life, too, was hungry, we could not keep
our hands off our clothes on our tongues from
2. Life – Sir Walter Raleigh
What is our life? A play of passion,
Our mirth the music of division,
Our mother’s wombs the tiring-houses be,
Where we are dressed for this short comedy.
Heaven the judicious sharp spectator is,
That sits and marks still who doth act amiss.
Our graves that hide us from the setting sun
Are like drawn curtains when the play is done.
Thus march we, playing, to our latest rest,
Only we die in earnest, that’s no jest.
3. Desiderata – Max Ehrmann
Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexatious to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs,
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Strive to be happy.
4. Each Moment Is Precious – Pat A. Fleming
Live in the moment,
Just take it all in.
Pay attention to everything,
Right there and right then.
Don’t let your mind wander
To what’s coming next.
Cherish this moment
And give it your best.
Don’t let tomorrow
Make you rush through today,
Or too many great moments
Will just go to waste.
And the person you’re with,
In that moment you share,
Give them all of your focus;
Be totally there.
Laugh till it hurts,
Let the tears drop.
Fill up each moment
With all that you’ve got.
Don’t miss the details;
The lesson is there.
Don’t get complacent;
Stay sharp and aware.
It can take but a moment
To change your life’s path.
And once it ticks by,
There is no going back.
In just 60 seconds,
You may make a new friend.
Find your true love,
Or see a life start or end.
You become who you are
In those moments you live.
And the growth’s not in taking
But in how much you give.
Life is just moments,
So precious and few.
Whether valued or squandered,
It’s all up to you!
5. Dust Of Snow – Robert Frost
The way a crow
Shook down on me
The dust of snow
From a hemlock tree
Has given my heart
A change of mood
And saved some part
Of a day I had rued.
6. The Road Not Taken – Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
7. You Will Never See Me Fall – Joyce Alcantara
You may see me struggle,
but you won’t see me fall.
Regardless if I’m weak or not,
I’m going to stand tall.
Everyone says life is easy,
but truly living it is not.
Times get hard,
and constantly get put on the spot.
I’m going to wear the biggest smile,
even though I want to cry.
I’m going to fight to live,
even though I’m destined to die.
And even though it’s hard
and I may struggle through it all,
you may see me struggle…
but you will NEVER see me fall.
8. The Summer Day – Mary Oliver
Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean—
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down—
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
9. A Simple Plan – Irwin Mercer
Simple Sam was a simple man.
He lived each day by a simple plan.
Enjoy your life and live while you can.
Make each day count and take a stand.
Stand on the left or stand on the right,
Whichever one you think is right.
Live each day as if your last.
Life’s too short and gone too fast.
10. Finding Hope – Pat A. Fleming
I’ve always viewed life from the side lines,
Just watching it passing me by.
In the past, too afraid to just let go and live,
And lately too tired to try.
I’ve envied the people around me
So invested in living each day,
While I spent my time hiding out from the world
And searching for ways to escape.
For most of my life I truly believed
I was here to help somebody else,
But now it’s so clear it was just an excuse.
To avoid living life for myself.
It’s sad that our lives and the pain we endure
Can weaken our strength to move on,
But if we get lost in the scars of our past,
Without knowing our lives will be gone.
It’s true, people are disappointing,
They can turn in the blink of an eye,
But we can’t avoid hurting each other,
When we all want a chance at this life.
But there’s something I’ve learned through the wisdom of age,
A truth about all of our lives,
And that is no matter what path we each take,
In the end, we just want to survive.
So the time has now come to conquer my fears
And to stand up and face a new day.
Let the hurts of my past wash away with my tears
And stop letting my life slip away.
11. Just Being Me – Elsa Nora
The life I seek must be fast”
The speed of life makes me laugh!
Death’s just around the corner for
a Queer like me!
Well so they say all of them Freaks.
Homophobia I really do detest
What I am is what I do best!
Like if you want, Answer! This ain’t no test
If you like me, “Great,” then we’re friends
If you hate me don’t make me get upset!
I’m just a Dike whom nobody Straight likes
Well forget you all, cause we love each other
my Baby and I!
You don’t have to shake my hand,
I’m not asking you to stare.
If you don’t like what you see,
then get the Hell out of here!
I am what I am,
So please understand
Even if you don’t
“Who really gives a damn?”
12. Life Is Fine – Langston Hughes
I went down to the river,
I set down on the bank.
I tried to think but couldn’t,
So I jumped in and sank.
I came up once and hollered!
I came up twice and cried!
If that water hadn’t a-been so cold
I might’ve sunk and died.
But it was Cold in that water! It was cold!
I took the elevator
Sixteen floors above the ground.
I thought about my baby
And thought I would jump down.
I stood there and I hollered!
I stood there and I cried!
If it hadn’t a-been so high
I might’ve jumped and died.
But it was High up there! It was high!
So since I’m still here livin’,
I guess I will live on.
I could’ve died for love–
But for livin’ I was born
Though you may hear me holler,
And you may see me cry–
I’ll be dogged, sweet baby,
If you gonna see me die.
Life is fine! Fine as wine! Life is fine!
When Life Is Tough
1. Legacies – Nikki Giovanni
her grandmother called her from the playground
“i want chu to learn how to make rolls” said the old
but the little girl didn’t want
to learn how because she knew
even if she couldn’t say it that
that would mean when the old one died she would be less
dependent on her spirit so
“i don’t want to know how to make no rolls”
with her lips poked out
and the old woman wiped her hands on
her apron saying “lord
and neither of them ever
said what they meant
and i guess nobody ever does
2. ‟Hope” Is The Thing With Feathers – Emily Dickinson
‟Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
nd sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –
And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –
I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
It asked a crumb – of me.
3. Be Nobody’s Darling Poem – Alice Walker
Be nobody’s darling;
Be an outcast.
Take the contradictions
Of your life
And wrap around
You like a shawl,
To parry stones
To keep you warm.
Watch the people succumb
With ample cheer;
Let them look askance at you
And you askance reply.
Be an outcast;
Be pleased to walk alone
Or line the crowded
With other impetuous
Make a merry gathering
On the bank
Where thousands perished
For brave hurt words
But be nobody’s darling;
Be an outcast.
Qualified to live
Among your dead.
4. I Took My Power In My Hand – Emily Dickinson
I took my Power in my Hand—
And went against the World—
’Twas not so much as David—had—
But I—was twice as bold—
I aimed by Pebble—but Myself
Was all the one that fell—
Was it Goliath—was too large—
Or was myself—too small?
5. Dirge Without Music – Edna St. Vincent Millay
I am not resigned to the shutting away of loving hearts in the hard ground.
So it is, and so it will be, for so it has been, time out of mind:
Into the darkness they go, the wise and the lovely. Crowned
With lilies and with laurel they go; but I am not resigned.
Lovers and thinkers, into the earth with you.
Be one with the dull, the indiscriminate dust.
A fragment of what you felt, of what you knew,
A formula, a phrase remains,—but the best is lost.
The answers quick and keen, the honest look, the laughter, the love,—
They are gone. They are gone to feed the roses. Elegant and curled
Is the blossom. Fragrant is the blossom. I know. But I do not approve.
More precious was the light in your eyes than all the roses in the world.
Down, down, down into the darkness of the grave
Gently they go, the beautiful, the tender, the kind;
Quietly they go, the intelligent, the witty, the brave.
I know. But I do not approve. And I am not resigned.
6. Suppose – E.E Cummings
Life is an old man carrying flowers on his head.
young death sits in a café
smiling,a piece of money held between
his thumb and first finger
(i say “will he buy flowers” to you
and “Death is young
life wears velour trousers
life totters,life has a beard” i
say to you who are silent.—”Do you see
Life?he is there and here,
or that, or this
or nothing or an old man 3 thirds
asleep,on his head
to nobody something about les
roses les bluets
will He buy?
Les belles bottes—oh hear
and my love slowly answered I think so. But
I think I see someone else
there is a lady, whose name is Afterwards
she is sitting beside young death, is slender;
Poems About Love
1. The Heartening – Winifred Webb
It may be that the words I spoke
To cheer him on his way,
To him were vain, but I myself
Was braver all that day.
2. Teodoro Luna’s Two Kisses – Alberto Ríos
Mr. Teodoro Luna in his later years had taken to kissing
Not so much with his lips as with his brows.
This is not to say he put his forehead
Against her mouth—
Rather, he would lift his eyebrows, once, quickly:
Not so vigorously he might be confused with the villain
Famous in the theaters, but not so little as to be thought
A slight movement, one of accident. This way
He kissed her
Often and quietly, across tables and through doorways,
Sometimes in photographs, and so through the years themselves.
This was his passion, that only she might see. The chance
He might feel some movement on her lips
3. Love In The Morning – Annie Finch
Morning’s a new bird
stirring against me
out of a quiet nest,
coming to flight—
clean as clear water,
mystery and mountain,
4. Poem I Wrote Sitting Across The Table From You – Kevin Varone
if I had two nickels to rub together
I would rub them together
like a kid rubs sticks together
until friction made combustion
and they burned
a hole in my pocket
into which I would put my hand
and then my arm
and eventually my whole self––
I would fold myself
into the hole in my pocket and disappear
into the pocket of myself, or at least my pants
but before I did
like some ancient star
I’d grab your hand
5. In Our Late Empire, Love – Malachi Black
drops from upper air,
to the fresh-cut hair
and the infantry:
the clicking heel, all will
the shrinking light
of wedding rice, of salt,
of sands as fit
a last brassy parade:
the marching band
with its growing-distant
the oscillating hand
soon enough, soon
here now, the motorcade
gaily through the citizens’
and the children’s eyes
with the glint
of far-off fireworks,
or falling evening stars.
6. Inviting A Friend To Supper – Ben Jonson
Tonight, grave sir, both my poor house, and I
Do equally desire your company;
Not that we think us worthy such a guest,
But that your worth will dignify our feast
With those that come, whose grace may make that seem
Something, which else could hope for no esteem.
It is the fair acceptance, sir, creates
The entertainment perfect, not the cates.
Yet shall you have, to rectify your palate,
An olive, capers, or some better salad
Ushering the mutton; with a short-legged hen,
If we can get her, full of eggs, and then
Lemons, and wine for sauce; to these a cony
Is not to be despaired of, for our money;
And, though fowl now be scarce, yet there are clerks,
The sky not falling, think we may have larks.
I’ll tell you of more, and lie, so you will come:
Of partridge, pheasant, woodcock, of which some
May yet be there, and godwit, if we can;
Knat, rail, and ruff too. Howsoe’er, my man
Shall read a piece of Virgil, Tacitus,
Livy, or of some better book to us,
Of which we’ll speak our minds, amidst our meat;
And I’ll profess no verses to repeat.
To this, if ought appear which I not know of,
That will the pastry, not my paper, show of.
Digestive cheese and fruit there sure will be;
But that which most doth take my Muse and me,
Is a pure cup of rich Canary wine,
Which is the Mermaid’s now, but shall be mine;
Of which had Horace, or Anacreon tasted,
Their lives, as so their lines, till now had lasted.
Tobacco, nectar, or the Thespian spring,
Are all but Luther’s beer to this I sing.
Of this we will sup free, but moderately,
And we will have no Pooley, or Parrot by,
Nor shall our cups make any guilty men;
But, at our parting we will be as when
We innocently met. No simple word
That shall be uttered at our mirthful board,
Shall make us sad next morning or affright
The liberty that we’ll enjoy tonight.
7. How To Love – January Gill O’Neil
After stepping into the world again,
there is that question of how to love,
how to bundle yourself against the frosted morning—
the crunch of icy grass underfoot, the scrape
of cold wipers along the windshield—
and convert time into distance.
What song to sing down an empty road
as you begin your morning commute?
And is there enough in you to see, really see,
the three wild turkeys crossing the street
with their featherless heads and stilt-like legs
in search of a morning meal? Nothing to do
but hunker down, wait for them to safely cross.
As they amble away, you wonder if they want
to be startled back into this world. Maybe you do, too,
waiting for all this to give way to love itself,
to look into the eyes of another and feel something—
the pleasure of a new lover in the unbroken night,
your wings folded around him, on the other side
of this ragged January, as if a long sleep has ended.
8. Love Comes Quietly – Robert Creeley
Love comes quietly,
about me, on me,
in the old ways.
What did I know
able to go
alone all the way.
Poems are written to convey emotion. While reading it helps us connect with others and make sense of our experiences, writing it is a cathartic release of inner turmoil. Children’s development in several areas may benefit from exposure to poetry.
Poetry is crucial because it enlightens and enriches our perception of the world.