PROBLEM POEMS

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The Wood-cutter

The sky is like an envelope,
One of those blue official things;
And, sealing it, to mock our hope,
The moon, a silver wafer, clings.
.....

Robert William Service
Scars Have Past

Every day you see your Scars,
The scars that define your past,
The scars that define what you are,
The scars that will interfere with your future,
.....
Richmond Gellez

Richmond Gellez
Blindfolded Mind

Minds are deluded but
Not from beginning
Ignorance makes it, however
Essences of mind is crystal pure.
.....
Norbu Dorji

Norbu Dorji
Ordinary Man

I have had dreams, I have set goals
Ive achieved some, had some dislodged and yet to achieve many.
I believe in myself, I believe in others
I know I’m not perfect, I don’t expect others to be either
.....
Bhekisipho Nyathi

Bhekisipho Nyathi
Lost Ln My Loneliness

Loneliness, oh Loneliness,
There is one word I want to say
But who to listen is my problem.
People say I have nothing important to say
.....
Borklo Solomon

Borklo Solomon
Life Is A Circus

A young lad blossoms from a petal,
Many challenges to come and yet to settle.
Here begins life's crazy circus,
To be happy but yet sometimes serious.
.....
Priyadarshini Goel

Priyadarshini Goel
O Heart Just Go To Hell

where do I go from here,
where do I hide?
this half heart,
where can I use it (that is, how do I love with it.)
.....
Pallavi Deepchand

Pallavi Deepchand
La Familia

My family is where my heart is
I’ll do everything to keep them at ease
Their sweet smile can make my day
To be calm and to be lovely
.....
Mary Joy Antiola

Mary Joy Antiola
Effort

He brought me his report card from the teacher and he said
He wasn't very proud of it and sadly bowed his head.
He was excellent in reading, but arithmetic, was fair,
And I noticed there were several 'unsatisfactorys' there;
.....
Edgar Albert Guest

Edgar Albert Guest
Gas

my grandmother had a serious gas
problem.
we only saw her on Sunday.
she'd sit down to dinner
.....

Charles Bukowski
With All Thy Gifts, America

With all thy gifts, America,
(Standing secure, rapidly tending, overlooking the world,)
Power, wealth, extent, vouchsafed to thee, With these, and like of these, vouchsafed to thee,
What if one gift thou lackest? (the ultimate human problem never solving;)
.....
Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman
The Wrathful

O pupils of Gaza . .
Teach us . . .
A little of what you have
For we have forgotten . . .
.....

Nizar Qabbani
Monna Innominata: A Sonnet Of Sonnets

1

Lo dì che han detto a' dolci amici addio. (Dante)
Amor, con quanto sforzo oggi mi vinci! (Petrarca)
.....
Christina Rossetti

Christina Rossetti
Full Flight

I'm in a plane that will not be flown into a building.
It's a SAAB 340, seats 40, has two engines with propellers
is why I think of beanies, those hats that would spin
a young head into the clouds. The plane is red and loud
.....

Bob Hicok
Alan Dugan Telling Me I Have A Problem With Time

He reads my latest attempt at a poem
and is silent for a long time, until it feels
like that night we waited for Apollo,
my mother wandering in and out of her bedroom, asking,
.....

Nick Flynn
Bel Canto

The sun is high, the seaside air is sharp,
And salty light reveals the Mayan School.
The Irish hope their names are on the harp,
We see the sheep's advertisement for wool,
.....

Kenneth Koch
What We Need

We were settin' there an' smokin' of our pipes, discussin' things,
Like licker, votes for wimmin, an' the totterin'thrones o' kings,
When he ups an' strokes his whiskers with his hand an' says t'me:
'Changin' laws an' legislatures ain't, as fur as I can see,
.....
Edgar Albert Guest

Edgar Albert Guest
Dust

Here is a problem, a wonder for all to see.
Look at this marvelous thing I hold in my hand!
This is a magic surprising, a mystery
Strange as a miracle, harder to understand.
.....
Celia Thaxter

Celia Thaxter
The Problem

The Problem

The name of the bow is life, but its work is death.
â??The Fragments
.....

B H Fairchild
The Listener

Why, certainly. Let's listen to the cricket.
Oh, I'm quite keen. Test match, I understand.
At... What's that? Oh, Australia's at the wicket.
South Africa - a most intriguing land.
.....

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis
Kar Paunga Ya Nhi

Kar paunga ya nhi
Socha bahut par dar lagta hai
Ki kar paunga ya nhi
Aashaye bahut hai par dar lagta hai
.....
Nitin Goyal

Nitin Goyal
Unarmed Combat

In due course of course you will all be issued with
Your proper issue; but until tomorrow,
You can hardly be said to need it; and until that time,
We shall have unarmed combat. I shall teach you.
.....

Henry Reed
Lamia

Part 1

Upon a time, before the faery broods
Drove Nymph and Satyr from the prosperous woods,
.....
John Keats

John Keats
The Hoary Precedent

Mr. Pericles, M.P.,
In four-sixty-nine B.C.,
Outed Cimon at a general election;
Premier Cimon, thuswise ex-ed,
.....

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis
100,000 Pennies

I broke into the bank on Sunday,
You should see the money I got.
I couldn't drag it home 'til Monday,
'Cause it sure weighed an awful lot.
.....
Shel Silverstein

Shel Silverstein
Why I Went To The Foot

Was ever a maiden so worried?
I'll admit I am partial to Jim,
For Jimmie has promised to wed me
When I'm old enough to wed him.
.....

Ellis Parker Butler
Four Quartets 3: The Dry Salvages

(The Dry Salvages-presumably les trois sauvages
- is a small group of rocks, with a beacon, off the N.E.
coast of Cape Ann, Massachusetts. Salvages is pronounced
to rhyme with assuages. Groaner: a whistling buoy.)
.....
T. S. Eliot

T. S. Eliot
Let's Stop Discrimination

it has been more than five decades since we got our liberial government!
We have come so far as a nation,
But there is still a long way to go.
I can see the future is bright but somehow my vision is blurry.
.....
Blessings Mitembo

Blessings Mitembo
Thanksgiving

I remember the first time i saw her.
Those brown eyes, beautiful nose and smile.
She caught my attention,
Quickly, something inside me wanted to talk to her.
.....
Blessings Mitembo

Blessings Mitembo
Life

With the waves, it moves
With the seasons it changes
With my smile, it fades
With my time it leaves
.....
Fihaal

Fihaal
Stars Over The Dordogne

Stars are dropping thick as stones into the twiggy
Picket of trees whose silhouette is darker
Than the dark of the sky because it is quite starless.
The woods are a well. The stars drop silently.
.....

Sylvia Plath
Our Pote

A pote is sure a goofy guy;
He ain't got guts like you or I
To tell the score;
He ain't goy gumption 'nuff to know
.....
Robert Service

Robert Service
A Thought

It's strange, isn't it?
Just being...there,
No real feeling, no real....presence.
You're around loved ones,
.....
Ace Eastmond

Ace Eastmond
The Laws Of Motion

The laws of science teach us a pound of gold weighs as
much as a pound of flour though if dropped from any
undetermined height in their natural state one would
reach bottom and one would fly away
.....

Nikki Giovanni
Goading The Muse

this man used to be an
interesting writer,
he was able to say brisk and
refreshing things.
.....

Charles Bukowski
Don Juan: Canto The Seventeenth

The world is full of orphans: firstly, those
Who are so in the strict sense of the phrase
(But many a lonely tree the loftier grows
Than others crowded in the forest's maze);
.....

George Gordon Byron
Workshop

I might as well begin by saying how much I like the title.
It gets me right away because I'm in a workshop now
so immediately the poem has my attention,
like the Ancient Mariner grabbing me by the sleeve.
.....

Billy Collins
The Death Of Euclid

[”Euclid, we are told, is at last dead, after two thousand
years of an immortality that he never much
deserved.”-The Times Literary Supplement.]

.....
R. C. Lehmann

R. C. Lehmann
The Broken Drum

There is sorrow in the household;
There's a grief too hard to bear;
There's a little cheek that's tear-stained
There's a sobbing baby there.
.....
Edgar Albert Guest

Edgar Albert Guest
A Modern Proposal

(It has been said that the feminist movement is the true
solution of the mother-in-law problem.)


.....

Alice Duer Miller
On The Beach At Night

ON the beach, at night,
Stands a child, with her father,
Watching the east, the autumn sky.

.....
Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman
The Symphony

“O Trade! O Trade! would thou wert dead!
The Time needs heart-'tis tired of head:
We're all for love,” the violins said.
“Of what avail the rigorous tale
.....
Sidney Lanier

Sidney Lanier
Cadet Grey: Canto Ii

I

Where West Point crouches, and with lifted shield
Turns the whole river eastward through the pass;
.....
Bret Harte

Bret Harte
Movement Of Bodies

Those of you that have got through the rest, I am going to rapidly
Devote a little time to showing you, those that can master it,
A few ideas about tactics, which must not be confused
With what we call strategy. Tactics is merely
.....

Henry Reed
A Pair

THERE was a youth--but woe is me :
I quite forgot his name, and he,
Without some label round his neck,
Is like one pea among a peck.
.....

Jane Taylor
The House Of Dust: Part 03: 10: Letter

From time to time, lifting his eyes, he sees
The soft blue starlight through the one small window,
The moon above black trees, and clouds, and Venus,—
And turns to write . . . The clock, behind ticks softly.
.....

Conrad Potter Aiken
The Played-out Humorist

Quixotic is his enterprise, and hopeless his adventure is,
Who seeks for jocularities that haven't yet been said.
The world has joked incessantly for over fifty centuries,
And every joke that's possible has long ago been made.
.....

William Schwenck Gilbert
Buckle In

JUST about the time the clouds are blackest
Let your thoughts go roving to the sun,
Just about the time your job is hardest
Think how glad you'll be when it is done.
.....
Edgar Albert Guest

Edgar Albert Guest
For A Certain Critic

Let lowly themes engage my humble pen
Stupidities of critics, not of men.
Be it mine once more the maunderings to trace
Of the expounders' self-directed race
.....

Ambrose Bierce