A Poetry-Lover’s Guide to the World Wide Web

We look for poetry which expresses genuine feeling: love, tenderness, despair, wistfulness, rage… The guide consists of 100 poems and 65 links to other poetry collections and guides.

The poems are English-language with a few non-English poems whose translations are, in themselves, great poetry.

 

The Guide is divided into three parts:

I have included almost no “modern poetry”. The print-published poetry of the past fifty years is what one might call “imagist poetry”*: thousands of well-crafted, carefully-thought-out poems of which astonishingly few express genuine feelings about things which are really important to human beings. I’ve tried, nevertheless, to search through these imagist/literary poems just as thoroughly as I’ve searched elsewhere…

I have omitted numerous generally-accepted-as-great Cavaliers, gallants, Romantics; Donne, Herrick, Milton, Pope, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Byron, Shelley, Keats, Tennyson, Browning (1 and 2), Poe. I respect them, but am not moved….

Forgive my pretensions. This is what you get when a guy working 40 hours a week as a software engineer with three children under 10 years old tries to take on something like “English-Language Poetry”. Whatever value the guide has lies in the absurdly simple idea that great poetry expresses genuine feelings about things which are really important to human beings.

Though we looked at thousands of poems, I’m certain there are many, many good poems which we’ve missed. This is a work-in-progress. If you know of others we should include, please email us: Lucius @ jspecht.org .

Lucius Furius

 

 

*imagist poetry: Though this term is normally used more narrowly, I feel it is the distinguishing characteristic of nearly all “modern poetry” (–see the third paragraph under “The Argument” on the Humanist Art Homepage).