Elegy by Jorge Luis Borges

Oh destiny of Borges to have sailed across the diverse seas of the world or across that single and solitary sea of diverse names, to have been a part of Edinburgh, of Zurich, of the two Cordobas, of Colombia and of Texas...

Heritage by Countee Cullen

What is Africa to me: Copper sun or scarlet sea, Jungle star or jungle track, Strong bronzed men, or regal black Women from whose loins I sprang When the birds of Eden sang? One three centuries removed From the scenes his fathers loved, Spicy grove, cinnamon tree, What is Africa to me?....

Omeros by Derek Walcott

In hill-towns, from San Fernando to Mayagüez, the same sunrise stirred the feathered lances of cane down the archipelago’s highways. The first breeze rattled the spears and their noise was like distant rain marching down from the hills, like a shell at your ears. In the cool asphalt Sundays of the Antilles....

Black Swans by Banjo Paterson

As I lie at rest on a patch of clover In the Western Park when the day is done, I watch as the wild black swans fly over With their phalanx turned to the sinking sun; And I hear the clang of their leader crying To a lagging mate in the rearward flying, And they fade away in the darkness dying, Where the stars are mustering one by one...

Dis Poetry by Benjamin Zephaniah

Dis poetry is like a riddim dat drops De tongue fires a riddim dat shoots like shots Dis poetry is designed fe rantin Dance hall style, big mouth chanting, Dis poetry nar put yu to sleep Preaching follow me Like yu is blind sheep, Dis poetry is not Party Political Not designed fe dose who are critical. Dis poetry is wid me when I gu to me bed It gets into me dreadlocks It lingers around me head Dis poetry goes wid me as I pedal me bike I've tried Shakespeare, respect due dere But did is de stuff I like...

Evangeline by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

This is the forest primeval. The murmuring pines and the hemlocks, Bearded with moss, and in garments green, indistinct in the twilight, Stand like Druids of eld, with voices sad and prophetic, Stand like harpers hoar, with beards that rest on their bosoms. Loud from its rocky caverns, the deep-voiced neighboring ocean Speaks, and in accents disconsolate answers the wail of the forest...

Birches by Robert Frost

When I see birches bend to left and right Across the lines of straighter darker trees, I like to think some boy's been swinging them. But swinging doesn't bend them down to stay As ice-storms do. Often you must have seen them Loaded with ice a sunny winter morning After a rain. They click upon themselves As the breeze rises, and turn many-colored As the stir cracks and crazes their enamel....

Hyperion by John Keats

Deep in the shady sadness of a vale Far sunken from the healthy breath of morn, Far from the fiery noon, and eve's one star, Sat gray-hair'd Saturn, quiet as a stone, Still as the silence round about his lair; Forest on forest hung about his head Like cloud on cloud. No stir of air was there, Not so much life as on a summer's day Robs not one light seed from the feather'd grass, But where the dead leaf fell, there did it rest. A stream went voiceless by, still deadened more By reason of his fallen divinity Spreading a shade: the Naiad 'mid her reeds Press'd her cold finger closer to her lips...

Ode to the Cat by Pablo Neruda

The animals were imperfect, long-tailed, unfortunate in their heads. Little by little they put themselves together, making themselves a landscape, acquiring spots, grace, flight. The cat, only the cat appeared complete and proud: he was born completely finished, walking alone and knowing what he wanted...

Renascence by Edna St Vincent Millay

ALL I could see from where I stood Was three long mountains and a wood; I turned and looked the other way, And saw three islands in a bay. So with my eyes I traced the line Of the horizon, thin and fine, Straight around till I was come Back to where I’d started from; And all I saw from where I stood Was three long mountains and a wood. Over these things I could not see: These were the things that bounded me...

The Amen Stone by Yehuda Amichai

On my desk there is a stone with the word “Amen” on it, a triangular fragment of stone from a Jewish graveyard destroyed many generations ago. The other fragments, hundreds upon hundreds, were scattered helter-skelter, and a great yearning, a longing without end, fills them all: first name in search of family name, date of death seeks...

Mazeppa by George Gordon Byron

'Twas after dread Pultowa's day, When fortune left the royal Swede-- Around a slaughtered army lay, No more to combat and to bleed. The power and glory of the war, Faithless as their vain votaries, men, Had passed to the triumphant Czar, And Moscow’s walls were safe again-- Until a day more dark and drear, And a more memorable year, Should give to slaughter and to shame A mightier host and haughtier name; A greater wreck, a deeper fall, A shock to one--a thunderbolt to all...

Behind the Scenes by Banjo Paterson

The actor struts his little hour, Between the limelight and the band; The public feel the actor's power, Yet nothing do they understand Of all the touches here and there That make or mar the actor's part, They never see, beneath the glare, The artist striving after art. To them it seems a labour slight Where nought of study intervenes; You see it in another light When once you've been behind the scenes...