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MetroGnome217's avatar

Could I get a poetry recommendation?

Asked by MetroGnome217 (311points) January 28th, 2011

For English class, we are doing a project were we must choose a poem from this site and then present it to the class. Now wait, please don’t get me wrong. I have truly tried to find a good poem and I have put in a good few hours of research. I was wondering if someone could recommend me a poem that is on the below website. Now, my issue is that I need a good grade on this project and I am looking for THE ONE. I want this poem to be powerful, presentable and original.
Any help would really be appreciated!

EDIT: Totally forgot the website

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26 Answers

josie's avatar

Anything by William Butler Yeats assuming it is on the website.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

Sylvia Plath, nice but depressing!

MetroGnome217's avatar

Just posted the website above
sorry about that and Thanks!

Seelix's avatar

What kind of presentation will you have to do? Will you have to give an analysis of the poem?

MetroGnome217's avatar

Sorry about the confusion, nope I have to present the poem in a passionate way

troubleinharlem's avatar

How about Invictus?
It’s powerful, presentable and pretty original.

crazyivan's avatar

Have you heard the one about the guy from Nantucket?

josie's avatar

The Second Coming by WB Yeats

blueiiznh's avatar

@troubleinharlem Invictus is amazing and I could choose it as my epitaph

troubleinharlem's avatar

@blueiiznh : I know! I love it.

MetroGnome217's avatar

Thanks you so much guys, this is a great site!
Invictus and the Second Coming are two great choices.
If anyone has a suggestion that they think is better, I would love to hear it!

troubleinharlem's avatar



well, okay, not really.

marinelife's avatar

Invictus is a good choice. So is anything by Frost.

But I would suggest Dog by Lawrence Ferlinghetti. (I wanted to suggest Ferlinghetti’s Underwear, but it is not on the site, probably because it would cause too many giggles in high school.)

Jeruba's avatar

Might I suggest “Ozymandias,” by Shelley? [ link ]

I’d bet this quarter that “Invictus” will be rather popular among the classmates. In fact, both of those poems, that and “The Second Coming,” are so well known that they’re bound to be suggested by parents and older siblings.

“Ozymandias” is also well known, but not quite in the forefront.

It’s short, it has drama, and it makes a strong point.

Just make sure you pronounce words such as “visage” correctly (look them up on or another source that lets you hear them), and go over it enough so that the grammar of the main statement makes sense to you and you can deliver it with a natural cadence.

Do you have to do this from memory? If not, try to have it mostly memorized anyway so you can look up while reading.

MetroGnome217's avatar

Thanks this is a very important point. I will take that into consideration when choosing my final poem.
Ill return to this thread in about an hour or two an announce the one I choose
Thanks to all who have helped and keep the suggestions pouring in!

marinelife's avatar

@Jeruba I love Ozymandias. I think it would be a good choice too.

Seelix's avatar

Agoraphobia struck me. It might be good for a performance, but it is a little longer. I liked “Invictus” as well.

SmashTheState's avatar

My favourite poems tend to be quite short and pithy. And bitingly cynical.

The friends I made have slipped and strayed.
And who’s the one that cares
A trifling lot and best forgot -
And that’s my tale, and theirs.
Then if my ‘friendships break and bend
There’s little need to cry
The while I know that every foe
Is faithful till I die.’

—Dorothy Parker


Philip Larkin -
This Be The Verse

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.

But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another’s throats.

Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don’t have any kids yourself.


In the Desert
by Stephen Crane

In the desert
I saw a creature, naked, bestial,
Who, squatting upon the ground,
Held his heart in his hands,
And ate of it.
I said, “Is it good, friend?”
“It is bitter – bitter”, he answered,
“But I like it
Because it is bitter,
And because it is my heart.”


by Stephen Crane
“Have you ever made a just man?”
“Oh, I have made three,” answered God,
“But two of them are dead,
And the third—
Listen! Listen!
And you will hear the thud of his defeat.”

Jeruba's avatar

Or, just for a change of focus, how about American and twentieth-century? Try this one: ‘Abandoned Farmhouse,’ by Ted Kooser.

absalom's avatar

Since you’ve already made the assignment meaningless by using others’ recommendations (thereby sidestepping the real purpose of said assignment, which very likely was to have you read through a hell of a lot of poetry while making conscious or even visceral judgments re: quality and presentatbility et cetera), you may as well choose ‘The Second Coming’ (which by the way is one of the most famous poems of the 20th century and, while great, a bit of an obvious choice) and simply copy Sam Waterston’s attenuated performance of it in Nixon.

anartist's avatar

From your website:
Fire and Ice is strong and short
Crossing the Bar especially if you have lost a loved one recently, this will stir emotions [maybe too many]
also try Do Not Go Gentle
Richard Cory was easy to read aloud dramatically in high school because of the strong punchline

stardust's avatar

I love alot of the recommendations above. Here’s an extra few I like
What lips my lips have kissed
A Sumpermarket in California
Bright Star..
There’s so many wonderful poems to choose from. As you are looking for The One, I would put pick whichever poem speaks to you most. The more the poem resonates with you, the better your project will be no doubt. Good luck :)

Epeters's avatar

You want something powerful? Try Gwendolyn Brooks’ “The Children of the Poor”

GabrielsLamb's avatar

To me…This is one of the most powerful pieces of poetry ever written.

But that being said, it is of a personal nature for me, and that is how I suggest you too find your own voice. No one can ever show you to yourself.

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