Famous Poems Quotes About Life
Poetry is a powerful art form that can inspire people to take action. Whether you want to apply for a new job, go on a date, or travel, poems can help you find the motivation you need.
‘If’ by Rudyard Kipling is a poignant reminder that even though death is inevitable, we must not give up hope. The poem also suggests that life is a dream, so we must enjoy it while we can.
‘If’ by Rudyard Kipling
Rudyard Kipling’s ‘If’ is an incredible poem full of timeless wisdom on what it means to be a man. The poem was written as paternal advice to Kipling’s son John after the failed Jameson Raid in the late 19th century. It celebrates traits that are traditionally masculine and urges men to be courageous, perseverant, and able to handle defeat.
The poem’s stern language is offset by its easy sing-songy rhyme scheme, conveying a sense of affection for the speaker’s son. In the first stanza, the speaker urges his son to “live the little triumphs” of life and not let them go to his head. He also warns him to treat both “Triumph and Disaster” as impostors, since neither lasts for long. This helps the young man to retain his composure and self-control.
‘Desiderata’ by Max Ehrmann
In this poem, Ehrmann offers simple but profound advice. He suggests that people should always look for the bright side of things and count their blessings. He also advises that they should try to be cheerful and happy, even in the face of sham, drudgery, and broken dreams.
The last line of the poem states that it is a beautiful world and that we should keep in mind that everything is happening as it should. The poet encourages people to find peace within themselves and be at peace with others, regardless of their differences.
Max Ehrmann was an attorney and poet born in Terre Haute, Indiana, of German descent. He wrote a large number of poems and many became famous after his death in 1945.
‘Earthward’ by John Donne
John Donne was an English poet of the Renaissance who was a master at using words and phrases in new ways. He could be hard to read at times, but his poems were awe-inspiring.
In this poem, Donne compares his love for his wife to the movement of the earth. He suggests that this movement is much more powerful than the “harms and fears” of natural disasters.
Donne also compares his love to a drafting compass, with his wife as the fixed point and him as the moving one. This is a common conceit in poetry, but Donne makes it particularly poignant here.
The poem concludes with Donne’s hope for God’s forgiveness. The speaker worries that he might be among the worst of sinners, but believes that God’s mercy is infinite and will help him to repent.
‘Life is but a dream’ by Emily Dickinson
A poetic masterpiece, this short poem has become one of the most famous poetry quotes of all time. Its lyrical language and powerful message make it both a moving and uplifting poem.
Dickinson’s signature formal techniques—tense dashes, unpredictable capitalization, and imperfect rhymes—add to the forcefulness of this piece. She expresses both ecstasy and grief in this poem, showing her emotional range.
This poem is an exploration of loss, especially in the context of a lover’s departure. It also expresses the idea that even the most stable and secure things can change at a moment’s notice. This is a great example of how life is like a dream, and how important it is to hold onto our dreams.
‘Letter to my Father’ by Dylan Thomas
Thomas uses the villanelle form to create a poem that feels passionate and obsessive. Its repetition and limited rhyme scheme make it a poem of intense passion. The poem doesn’t tell us much about the speaker, but it hints that he or she is terrified of death.
The poem’s opening lines instruct the reader not to “go gentle into that good night.” The speaker does not want people to give in to death, which he or she compares to darkness. Instead, he or she wants people to fight until the very end.
The poem talks about a lot of different people-wise men, good men, wild men, and grave men-but it’s really meant for the speaker’s father. It’s his or her way of telling the dad to not give up on life.