By Heart

Listing here poems committed to memory. Some of these are poems I memorized as a child. Others that I’ll add over the course of maintaining this weblog will be poems I’ll work on adding to my memory. With the order of these to be regularly rotated, with the poem listed at the top being the one I’ll be currently reciting or working on memorizing.

  1. Shelley, Percy Bysshe — Ozymandias [Poetry Foundation] Originally memorized around the age of 10. Currently polishing that memory back up to a shine.
     
  2. Emerson, Ralph Waldo — The Snow Storm [Poets.org] This is one I’m working on memorizing. With this winter being what it is, so as frequently as this poem has been passing through my reading, it’s a natural one to add to my memory banks.
     
  3. Donne, JohnHoly Sonnets: Death, Be Not Proud [Poetry In Voice]
     
  4. Blake, William — The Tyger [Poets.org] Memorized as a child. Refreshing it with each further recitation.
     
  5. Browning, Elizabeth Barrett — Sonnets from the Portuguese: XLIII [Wikisource] I’m ashamed to admit that as well and as long as I have known the opening and closing lines of this classic, I’ve not yet committed the rest to memory. That shortcoming I shall soon fix.
     
  6. Minter, Peter — Fugue Moment [Jacket] 2/20/2010: Glad I printed this out for memorization work, since Jacket’s Issue 40 seems to have vanished (…but has since returned intact).
     
  7. Coleridge, Samuel Taylor — Kubla Khan [Poets.org] Dusting the rust off a childhood memorization.
     
  8. Keats, John — Bright Star [Poets.org] One I’d memorized as a child and need to refresh.
     
  9. McCrae, John — In Flanders Fields [Everyday Poems] Of course I already had this classic in my rondeau set; now adding my childhood’s memorization of it to this refresh stack.
     
  10. Clare, John — I Am [Poetry In Voice] Another that I first memorized decades ago, now wishing to freshen up the remembrance.
     
  11. Plath, Sylvia — Mad Girl’s Love Song [Neurotic Poets] One of the first poems I memorized on my own outside the classroom; and a poem I once got myself in trouble over for reciting from memory at what was deemed an inopportune moment.
     

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