Here are my favorite sad breakup poems for her categorized:
- Sad breakup poems for her to fall in love
- Sad breakup poems for her that will make her cry
- Sad breakup poems for long distance relationships
- Sad breakup poems that rhyme
- Short breakup poems
So if you want the best sad breakup poems for her, then you’re in the right place.
Let’s get started!
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Sad Breakup Poems for Her
Explore a selection of the most heart-wrenching breakup poems for her, carefully curated and categorized for your browsing pleasure.
Whether you seek works that express the pain and sadness of a breakup or offer a concise yet poignant take on the end of a relationship, our collection offers a range of exquisite examples.
With our handpicked selection, you can find the best sad breakup poems for her all in one convenient location.
So take a moment to immerse yourself in the raw emotions and honest reflections of these powerful works.
Let’s dig into it!
My #1 Favorite Sad Breakup Poem for Her
“When Love Becomes a Stranger” by Elsa Gidlow
When Love becomes a stranger
In the temple he has built
Of remembered nights and days,
When he sighs and turns away
From the altar in the temple
With unreturning feet,
When the candles flicker out
And the magical-sweet incense
Vanishes . . .
Do you think there is grief born
In any god’s heart?
Sad Breakup Poems for Her to Fall in Love
“Sonnet 7” by Alan Seeger
There have been times when I could storm and plead,
But you shall never hear me supplicate.
These long months that have magnified my need
Have made my asking less importunate,
For now small favors seem to me so great
That not the courteous lovers of old time
Were more content to rule themselves and wait,
Easing desire with discourse and sweet rhyme.
Nay, be capricious, willful; have no fear
To wound me with unkindness done or said,
Lest mutual devotion make too dear
My life that hangs by a so slender thread,
And happy love unnerve me before May
For that stern part that I have yet to play.
“Song” by Alice Christiana Thompson Meynell
My Fair, no beauty of thine will last
Save in my love’s eternity.
Thy smiles, that light thee fitfully,
Are lost for ever–their moment past–
Except the few thou givest to me.
Thy sweet words vanish day by day,
As all breath of mortality;
Thy laughter, done, must cease to be,
And all thy dear tones pass away,
Except the few that sing to me.
Hide then within my heart, oh, hide
All thou art loth should go from thee.
Be kinder to thyself and me.
My cupful from this river’s tide
Shall never reach the long sad sea.
“A Shropshire Lad 15” by Alfred Edward Housman
Look not in my eyes, for fear
They mirror true the sight I see,
And there you find your face too clear
And love it and be lost like me.
One the long nights through must lie
Spent in star-defeated sighs,
But why should you as well as I
Perish? gaze not in my eyes.
A Grecian lad, as I hear tell,
One that many loved in vain,
Looked into a forest well
And never looked away again.
There, when the turf in springtime flowers,
With downward eye and gazes sad,
Stands amid the glancing showers
A jonquil, not a Grecian lad.
“Farewell” by Anne Brontë
Farewell to thee! but not farewell
To all my fondest thoughts of thee:
Within my heart they still shall dwell;
And they shall cheer and comfort me.
O, beautiful, and full of grace!
If thou hadst never met mine eye,
I had not dreamed a living face
Could fancied charms so far outvie.
If I may ne’er behold again
That form and face so dear to me,
Nor hear thy voice, still would I fain
Preserve, for aye, their memory.
That voice, the magic of whose tone
Can wake an echo in my breast,
Creating feelings that, alone,
Can make my tranced spirit blest.
That laughing eye, whose sunny beam
My memory would not cherish less;
And oh, that smile! whose joyous gleam
Nor mortal language can express.
Adieu, but let me cherish, still,
The hope with which I cannot part.
Contempt may wound, and coldness chill,
But still it lingers in my heart.
And who can tell but Heaven, at last,
May answer all my thousand prayers,
And bid the future pay the past
With joy for anguish, smiles for tears?
“Sonnet 5” by Alan Seeger
Seeing you have not come with me, nor spent
This day’s suggestive beauty as we ought,
I have gone forth alone and been content
To make you mistress only of my thought.
And I have blessed the fate that was so kind
In my life’s agitations to include
This moment’s refuge where my sense can find
Refreshment, and my soul beatitude.
Oh, be my gentle love a little while!
Walk with me sometimes. Let me see you smile.
Watching some night under a wintry sky,
Before the charge, or on the bed of pain,
These blessed memories shall revive again
And be a power to cheer and fortify.
“A Valentine [From a Very Little Boy to a Very Little Girl]” by Arthur Macy
This is a valentine for you.
Mother made it. She’s real smart,
I told her that I loved you true
And you were my sweetheart.
And then she smiled, and then she winked,
And then she said to father,
“Beginning young!” and then he thinked,
And then he said, “Well, rather.”
Then mother’s eyes began to shine,
And then she made this valentine:
“If you love me as I love you,
No knife shall cut our love in two,”
And father laughed and said, “How new!”
And then he said, “It’s time for bed.”
So, when I’d said my prayers,
Mother came running up the stairs
And told me I might send the rhymes,
And then she kissed me lots of times.
Then I turned over to the wall
And cried about you, and – that’s all.
“When I Was Twenty” by Bliss Carman (William)
It was June, and I was twenty.
All my wisdom, poor but plenty,
Never learned Festina lente.
Youth is gone, but whither went he?
Madeline came down the orchard
With a mischief in her eye,
Half demure and half inviting,
Melting, wayward, wistful, shy.
Four bright eyes that found life lovely,
And forgot to wonder why;
Four warm lips at one love-lesson,
Learned by heart so easily.
We gained something of that knowledge
No man ever yet put by,
But his after days of sorrow
Left him nothing but to die.
Madeline went up the orchard,
Down the hurrying world went I;
Now I know love has no morrow,
Happiness no by-and-by.
Youth is gone, but whither went he?
All my wisdom, poor but plenty,
Never learned Festina lente.
It was June, and I was twenty.
“The Blonde Maiden” by Bjørnstjerne Martinius Bjørnson
Though she depart, a vision flitting,
If I these thoughts in words exhale:
I love you, you blonde maiden, sitting
Within your pure white beauty’s veil.
I love you for your blue eyes dreaming,
Like moonlight moving over snow,
And ‘mid the far-off forests beaming
On something hid I may not know.
I love this forehead’s fair perfection
Because it stands so starry-clear,
In flood of thought sees its reflection
And wonders at the image near.
I love these locks in riot risen
Against the hair-net’s busy bands;
To free them from their pretty prison
Their sylphs entice my eyes and hands.
I love this figure’s supple swinging
In rhythm of its bridal song,
Of strength and life-joy daily singing
With youthful yearnings deep and long.
I love this foot so lightly bearing
The glory of sure victory
Through youth’s domain of merry daring
To meet first-love that hers shall be.
I love these hands, these lips enchanting,
With them the God of love’s allied,
With them the apple-prize is granting,
But guards them, too, lest aught betide.
I love you and must say it ever,
Although you heed not what you’ve heard,
But flee and answer: maidens never
May put their trust in poet’s word.
“Across the Table. To A. L. L.” by Bliss Carman (William)
Here’s to you, Arthur! You and I
Have seen a lot of stormy weather,
Since first we clinked cups on the sly
At school together.
The winds of fate have had their will
And blown our crafts so far apart
We hardly knew if either still
Were on the chart.
But now I know the love of man
Is more than time or space or fate,
And laugh to scorn the powers that ban,
With you for mate.
It’s good to have you sitting by,
Old man, to prove the world no botch,
To shame the devil with your eye
And pass the Scotch.
“I Adore You as Much as the Nocturnal Vault” by Charles Baudelaire
I adore you, the nocturnal vault’s likeness,
O vast taciturnity, o vase of sadness:
I love you, my beauty, the more you flee,
Grace of my nights, the more you seem,
To multiply distances, ah ironically,
That bar my arms from the blue immensity.
I advance to the attack, climb to the assault
Like a swarm of worms attacking a corpse,
And I cherish, o creature cruel, and implacable,
Your coldness that makes you, for me, more beautiful!
“The Death of Lovers” by Charles Baudelaire
We will have beds imbued with mildest scent,
And couches, deep as tombs, in which to lie,
Flowers around us, strange and opulent,
Blooming on shelves under the finest skies.
Approaching equally their final light,
Our twin hearts will be two great flaming brands
That will be double in each other’s sight
Our souls the mirrors where the image stands.
One evening made of rose and mystic blue
We will flare out, in an epiphany
Like a long sob, charged with our last adieus.
And later, opening the doors, will be
An Angel, who will joyfully reglaze
The tarnished mirrors, and relight the blaze.
“The Cat” by Charles Baudelaire
Come, my fine cat, to my amorous heart;
Please let your claws be concealed.
And let me plunge into your beautiful eyes,
Coalescence of agate and steel.
When my leisurely fingers are stroking your head
And your body’s elasticity,
And my hand becomes drunk with the pleasure it finds
In the feel of electricity,
My woman comes into my mind. Her regard
Like your own, my agreeable beast,
Is deep and is cold, and it splits like a spear,
And, from her head to her feet,
A subtle and dangerous air of perfume
Floats always around her brown skin.
“May Wind” by Sara Teasdale
I said, “I have shut my heart
As one shuts an open door,
That Love may starve therein
And trouble me no more.”
But over the roofs there came
The wet new wind of May,
And a tune blew up from the curb
Where the street-pianos play.
My room was white with the sun
And Love cried out in me,
“I am strong, I will break your heart
Unless you set me free.”
“Remember” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
Remember me when I am gone away,
Gone far away into the silent land;
When you can no more hold me by the hand,
Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.
Remember me when no more day by day
You tell me of our future that you planned:
Only remember me; you understand
It will be late to counsel then or pray.
Yet if you should forget me for a while
And afterwards remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
Better by far you should forget and smile
Than that you should remember and be sad.
“Child, Child” by Sara Teasdale
Child, child, love while you can
The voice and the eyes and the soul of a man;
Never fear though it break your heart,
Out of the wound new joy will start;
Only love proudly and gladly and well,
Though love be heaven or love be hell.
Child, child, love while you may,
For life is short as a happy day;
Never fear the thing you feel,
Only by love is life made real;
Love, for the deadly sins are seven,
Only through love will you enter heaven.
“The Wayfarer” by Sara Teasdale
Love entered in my heart one day,
A sad, unwelcome guest;
But when he begged that he might stay,
I let him wait and rest.
He broke my sleep with sorrowing,
And shook my dreams with tears,
And when my heart was fain to sing,
He stilled its joy with fears.
But now that he has gone his way,
I miss the old sweet pain,
And sometimes in the night I pray
That he may come again.
Sad Breakup Poems for Her That Will Make Her Cry
“Weep Not for Him” by A. H. Laidlaw
Weep not for him who, in the battle dying,
Lives in the lays of those he sought to save;
Weep not for him who on the cold turf lying,
Finds in his native land a patriot’s grave;
Weep not for him for whom the night wind, sighing,
Spreads o’er his bier the banner of the brave;
But, o’er the ashes of the dead hussar,
Shout to the thunder and the trump of war.
Go weep for her who, by her Love’s side sighing,
Gives to the grave the form she loved so well;
And weep for her who meets no soft replying
To the sweet story she would die to tell;
Aye, weep for her whose Love, to Lethe flying,
Left on her lip no mark of his farewell;
Oh, weep for her whose star of life is dim;
Weep, weep for her; but weep no more for him.
“Tears, Tears” by A. H. Laidlaw
With wifely fears
Immixed – I held my breath,
As down the street
The drums did beat
That led you to your death,
Where’er I go,
And soldier boys I see,
I wis’, I wis’,
For him whose kiss
Was blessedness to me,
By wish and will,
The land you saved, I love,
Beneath a stone,
It holds your bone,
I’ll clasp your soul above,
“To a Proud Beauty – A Valentine” by Adam Lindsay Gordon
Though I have loved you well, I ween,
And you, too, fancied me,
Your heart hath too divided been
A constant heart to be.
And like the gay and youthful knight,
Who loved and rode away,
Your fleeting fancy takes a flight
With every fleeting day.
So let it be as you propose,
Tho’ hard the struggle be;
‘Tis fitter far, that goodness knows!
Since we cannot agree.
Let’s quarrel once for all, my sweet,
Forget the past, and then
I’ll kiss each pretty girl I meet,
While you’ll flirt with the men.
“The Love of Narcissus” by Alice Christiana Thompson Meynell
Like him who met his own eyes in the river,
The poet trembles at his own long gaze
That meets him through the changing nights and days
From out great Nature; all her waters quiver
With his fair image facing him for ever;
The music that he listens to betrays
His own heart to his ears; by trackless ways
His wild thoughts tend to him in long endeavour.
His dreams are far among the silent hills;
His vague voice calls him from the darkened plain
With winds at night; strange recognition thrills
His lonely heart with piercing love and pain;
He knows his sweet mirth in the mountain rills,
His weary tears that touch him with the rain.
“Thora’s Song – (‘Ashtaroth’)” by Adam Lindsay Gordon
We severed in autumn early,
Ere the earth was torn by the plough;
The wheat and the oats and the barley
Are ripe for the harvest now.
We sunder’d one misty morning,
Ere the hills were dimm’d by the rain,
Through the flowers those hills adorning,
Thou comest not back again.
My heart is heavy and weary
With the weight of a weary soul;
The mid-day glare grows dreary,
And dreary the midnight scroll.
The corn-stalks sigh for the sickle,
‘Neath the load of the golden grain;
I sigh for a mate more fickle,
Thou comest not back again.
The warm sun riseth and setteth,
The night bringeth moist’ning dew,
But the soul that longeth forgetteth
The warmth and the moisture, too;
In the hot sun rising and setting
There is naught save feverish pain;
There are tears in the night-dews wetting,
Thou comest not back again.
Thy voice in mine ear still mingles
With the voices of whisp’ring trees;
Thy kiss on my cheek still tingles
At each kiss of the summer breeze;
While dreams of the past are thronging
For substance of shades in vain,
I am waiting, watching, and longing,
Thou comest not back again.
Waiting and watching ever,
Longing and lingering yet,
Leaves rustle and corn-stalks quiver,
Winds murmur and waters fret;
No answer they bring, no greeting,
No speech save that sad refrain,
Nor voice, save an echo repeating,
He cometh not back again.
“Sonnet 9” by Alan Seeger
Well, seeing I have no hope, then let us part;
Having long taught my flesh to master fear,
I should have learned by now to rule my heart,
Although, Heaven knows, ’tis not so easy near.
Oh, you were made to make men miserable
And torture those who would have joy in you,
But I, who could have loved you, dear, so well,
Take pride in being a good loser too;
And it has not been wholly unsuccess,
For I have rescued from forgetfulness
Some moments of this precious time that flies,
Adding to my past wealth of memory
The pretty way you once looked up at me,
Your low, sweet voice, your smile, and your dear eyes.
“Pathos” by Alfred Lichtenstein
You don’t love me… I have never appealed to you…
Was never your type…
And my hard eyes annoy you, my darling…
I’m too dark for you. And too coarse –
And my white teeth have such a brutal shine
And my bloody lips are so terribly like sickles.
Ah, what you say –
Yes you are really right. I set you… free.
And early in the morning I am going to an ocean
That is blue and eternal…
And lie on the beach…
And play with a smile on my face, until a death grabs me,
With sand and sun and with a white
“The New Mistress” by Alfred Edward Housman
“Oh, sick I am to see you, will you never let me be?
You may be good for something, but you are not good for me.
Oh, go where you are wanted, for you are not wanted here.”
And that was all the farewell when I parted from my dear.
“I will go where I am wanted, to a lady born and bred
Who will dress me free for nothing in a uniform of red;
She will not be sick to see me if I only keep it clean:
I will go where I am wanted for a soldier of the Queen.”
“I will go where I am wanted, for the sergeant does not mind;
He may be sick to see me but he treats me very kind:
He gives me beer and breakfast and a ribbon for my cap,
And I never knew a sweetheart spend her money on a chap.”
“I will go where I am wanted, where there’s room for one or two,
And the men are none too many for the work there is to do;
Where the standing line wears thinner and the dropping dead lie thick;
And the enemies of England they shall see me and be sick.”
“Sonnet” by Alice Christiana Thompson Meynell
I touched the heart that loved me as a player
Touches a lyre; content with my poor skill
No touch save mine knew my beloved (and still
I thought at times: Is there no sweet lost air
Old loves could wake in him, I cannot share?).
Oh, he alone, alone could so fulfil
My thoughts in sound to the measure of my will.
He is gone, and silence takes me unaware.
The songs I knew not he resumes, set free
From my constraining love, alas for me!
His part in our tune goes with him; my part
Is locked in me for ever; I stand as mute
As one with full strong music in his heart
Whose fingers stray upon a shattered lute.
“Renouncement” by Alice Christiana Thompson Meynell
I must not think of thee; and, tired yet strong,
I shun the thought that lurks in all delight–
The thought of thee–and in the blue Heaven’s height,
And in the sweetest passage of a song.
Oh, just beyond the fairest thoughts that throng
This breast, the thought of thee waits, hidden yet bright;
But it must never, never come in sight;
I must stop short of thee the whole day long.
But when sleep comes to close each difficult day,
When night gives pause to the long watch I keep,
And all my bonds I needs must loose apart,
Must doff my will as raiment laid away,–
With the first dream that comes with the first sleep
I run, I run, I am gathered to thy heart.
“Sonnet 73” by Anna Seward
He who a tender long-lov’d Wife survives,
Sees himself sunder’d from the only mind
Whose hopes, and fears, and interests, were combin’d,
And blended with his own. – No more she lives!
No more, alas! her death-numb’d ear receives
His thoughts, that trace the Past, or anxious wind
The Future’s darkling maze! – His wish refin’d,
The wish to please, exists no more, that gives
The will its energy, the nerves their tone! –
He feels the texture of his quiet torn,
And stopt the settled course that Action drew;
Life stands suspended – motionless – till thrown
By outward causes, into channels new; –
But, in the dread suspense, how sinks the Soul forlorn!
“You Thought I Was That Type” by Anna Akhmatova
You thought I was that type:
That you could forget me,
And that I’d plead and weep
And throw myself under the hooves of a bay mare,
Or that I’d ask the sorcerers
For some magic potion made from roots and send you a terrible gift:
My precious perfumed handkerchief.
Damn you! I will not grant your cursed soul
Vicarious tears or a single glance.
And I swear to you by the garden of the angels,
I swear by the miracle-working icon,
And by the fire and smoke of our nights:
I will never come back to you.
“Memory of Sun” by Anna Akhmatova
Memory of sun seeps from the heart.
Grass grows yellower.
Faintly if at all the early snowflakes
Water becoming ice is slowing in
The narrow channels.
Nothing at all will happen here again,
Will ever happen.
Against the sky the willow spreads a fan
The silk’s torn off.
Maybe it’s better I did not become
Memory of sun seeps from the heart.
What is it? — Dark?
Perhaps! Winter will have occupied us
In the night.
“Premonition” by Bliss Carman (William)
He said, “Good-night, my heart is light,
To-morrow morn at day
We two together in the dew
Shall forth and fare away.
“We shall go down, the halls of dawn
To find the doors of joy;
We shall not part again, dear heart.”
And he laughed out like a boy.
He turned and strode down the blue road
Against the western sky
Where the last line of sunset glowed
As sullen embers die.
The night reached out her kraken arms
To clutch him as he passed,
And for one sudden moment
My soul shrank back aghast.
“A Hill Song” by Bliss Carman (William)
Hills where once my love and I
Let the hours go laughing by!
All your woods and dales are sad,–
You have lost your Oread.
Falling leaves! Silent woodlands!
Half your loveliness is fled.
Golden-rod, wither now!
Winter winds, come hither now!
All the summer joy is dead.
There’s a sense of something gone
In the grass I linger on.
There’s an under-voice that grieves
In the rustling of the leaves.
Pine-clad peaks! Rushing waters!
Glens where we were once so glad!
There’s a light passed from you,
There’s a joy outcast from you,–
You have lost your Oread.
“A Song by the Shore” by Bliss Carman (William)
“Lose and love” is love’s first art;
So it was with thee and me,
For I first beheld thy heart
On the night I last saw thee.
Pine-woods and mysteries!
Sea-sands and sorrows!
Hearts fluttered by a breeze
That bodes dark morrows, morrows,–
Bodes dark morrows!
Moonlight in sweet overflow
Poured upon the earth and sea!
Lovelight with intenser glow
In the deeps of thee and me!
Clasped hands and silences!
Hearts faint and throbbing!
The weak wind sighing in the trees!
The strong surf sobbing, sobbing,–
The strong surf sobbing!
“At the Play” by Charles Hamilton Musgrove
The poet painted a woman’s soul,
Human, trusting and kind,
And then he drew the soul of a man,
Brutal and base and blind;
And the woman loved in the old, old way,
And the man in the way of men,
And the poet christened their lives “A Play,”
And he sat down to watch it, and then …
A woman rose with a bitter laugh,
And her eyes were as dry as stone
As she bowed her head at the poet’s stall
And said in a strange, cold tone:
“He paints the best who has dipped his brush
In the heart’s own blood, they say;
You took my love and you took my life,
But you gave the world–a play!”
“The Ugly Princess” by Charles Kingsley
My parents bow, and lead them forth,
For all the crowd to see –
Ah well! the people might not care
To cheer a dwarf like me.
They little know how I could love,
How I could plan and toil,
To swell those drudges’ scanty gains,
Their mites of rye and oil.
They little know what dreams have been
My playmates, night and day;
Of equal kindness, helpful care,
A mother’s perfect sway.
Now earth to earth in convent walls,
To earth in churchyard sod:
I was not good enough for man,
And so am given to God.
“Margaret to Dolcino” by Charles Kingsley
Ask if I love thee? Oh, smiles cannot tell
Plainer what tears are now showing too well.
Had I not loved thee, my sky had been clear:
Had I not loved thee, I had not been here,
Weeping by thee.
Ask if I love thee? How else could I borrow
Pride from man’s slander, and strength from my sorrow?
Laugh when they sneer at the fanatic’s bride,
Knowing no bliss, save to toil and abide
Weeping by thee.
“Wife to Husband” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
Pardon the faults in me,
For the love of years ago:
I must drift across the sea,
I must sink into the snow,
I must die.
You can bask in this sun,
You can drink wine, and eat:
I must gird myself and run,
Though with unready feet:
I must die.
Blank sea to sail upon,
Cold bed to sleep in:
While you clasp, I must be gone
For all your weeping:
I must die.
A kiss for one friend,
And a word for two,–
A lock that you must send,
A kindness you must do:
I must die.
Not a word for you,
Not a lock or kiss,
We, one, must part in two;
Verily death is this:
I must die.
“One Foot on Sea, and One on Shore” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
“Oh tell me once and tell me twice
And tell me thrice to make it plain,
When we who part this weary day,
When we who part shall meet again.”
“When windflowers blossom on the sea
And fishes skim along the plain,
Then we who part this weary day,
Then you and I shall meet again.”
“Yet tell me once before we part,
Why need we part who part in pain?
If flowers must blossom on the sea,
Why, we shall never meet again.
“My cheeks are paler than a rose,
My tears are salter than the main,
My heart is like a lump of ice
If we must never meet again.”
“Oh weep or laugh, but let me be,
And live or die, for all’s in vain;
For life’s in vain since we must part,
And parting must not meet again
“Till windflowers blossom on the sea,
And fishes skim along the plain;
Pale rose of roses let me be,
Your breaking heart breaks mine again.”
“On the Wing” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
Once in a dream (for once I dreamed of you)
We stood together in an open field;
Above our heads two swift-winged pigeons wheeled,
Sporting at ease and courting full in view.
When loftier still a broadening darkness flew,
Down-swooping, and a ravenous hawk revealed;
Too weak to fight, too fond to fly, they yield;
So farewell life and love and pleasures new.
Then, as their plumes fell fluttering to the ground,
Their snow-white plumage flecked with crimson drops,
I wept, and thought I turned towards you to weep:
But you were gone; while rustling hedgerow tops
Bent in a wind which bore to me a sound
Of far-off piteous bleat of lambs and sheep.
“Mariana” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
Not for me marring or making,
Not for me giving or taking;
I love my Love and he loves not me,
I love my Love and my heart is breaking.
Sweet is Spring in its lovely showing,
Sweet the violet veiled in blowing,
Sweet it is to love and be loved;
Ah, sweet knowledge beyond my knowing!
Who sighs for love sighs but for pleasure,
Who wastes for love hoards up a treasure;
Sweet to be loved and take no count,
Sweet it is to love without measure.
Sweet my Love whom I loved to try for,
Sweet my Love whom I love and sigh for,
Will you once love me and sigh for me,
You my Love whom I love and die for?
“You Are Not She” by Elsa Gidlow
You are not she I loved. You cannot be
My wild, white dove,
My tempest-driven dove that I gave house,
You cannot be my Love.
She died. I used to hold her all night long;
At dawn beside her. Try to ease with loving
A thirst too deep to slake.
O, it was pain to keep her shut against me.
Honey and bitterness
To taste her with sharp kisses and hold her after
In brief duress.
You cold woman, you stranger with her ways,
You tear my heart as never her wild wings’
“Her First Sorrow” by Ameen Rihani
’T is but a score of hours when he didst swear
My sorrow and my joy to share.
Despite the fates, fore’er ;
But now he’s gone to cash again his lie ;
Others his shame with me will wear,
Why should I die?
Last night his lips my very feet didst burn ;
His kisses dropt, my love to earn,
Whichever way he’d turn ;
But now he’s gone another soul to rob,
Another heart to lure and spurn,
Why should I sob?
He did not kiss me when he said good-bye ;
I let him go, not asking why,
Nor do I for him sigh ;
He’s gone another virgin breast to tear.
He’s gone on other lips to die,
Why should I care?
“I Know I Have Been Happiest” by Dorothy Parker
I know I have been happiest at your side;
But what is done, is done, and all’s to be.
And small the good, to linger dolefully,—
Gaily it lived, and gallantly it died.
I will not make you songs of hearts denied,
And you, being man, would have no tears of me,
And should I offer you fidelity,
You’d be, I think, a little terrified.
Yet this the need of woman, this her curse:
To range her little gifts, and give, and give,
Because the throb of giving’s sweet to bear.
To you, who never begged me vows or verse,
My gift shall be my absence, while I live;
But after that, my dear, I cannot swear.
“Gone With the Swallows” by Ameen Rihani
Must I convey at last the news to thee?
Must I now mourn the love that lived in me?
Gone with the autumn, with the dying year.
Gone with the kisses that are yet so near!
Gone with the swallows somewhere o’er the sea!
But with the Spring will he again
Return, will he with me remain?
Must I till then, remembering naught,
Forgetting all that love had brought,
Grope in the shadows of the slain?
Must I forget the day
That took my love away,
And all the happy hours
That reared for him their towers
And crowned him with the flowers
Of all the queens of May?
Must I alone
My once my own,
In my retreat
The new year greet,
And winter meet,
And winds hear moan?
“Spring Night” by Sara Teasdale
The park is filled with night and fog,
The veils are drawn about the world,
The drowsy lights along the paths
Are dim and pearled.
Gold and gleaming the empty streets,
Gold and gleaming the misty lake,
The mirrored lights like sunken swords,
Glimmer and shake.
Oh, is it not enough to be
Here with this beauty over me?
My throat should ache with praise, and I
Should kneel in joy beneath the sky.
O, beauty, are you not enough?
Why am I crying after love,
With youth, a singing voice, and eyes
To take earth’s wonder with surprise?
Why have I put off my pride,
Why am I unsatisfied,
I, for whom the pensive night
Binds her cloudy hair with light,
I, for whom all beauty burns
Like incense in a million urns?
O beauty, are you not enough?
Why am I crying after love?
“Pattern” by Dorothy Parker
Leave me to my lonely pillow.
Go, and take your silly posies;
Who has vowed to wear the willow
Looks a fool, tricked out in roses.
Who are you, my lad, to ease me?
Leave your pretty words unspoken.
Tinkling echoes little please me,
Now my heart is freshly broken.
Over young are you to guide me,
And your blood is slow and sleeping.
If you must, then sit beside me….
Tell me, why have I been weeping?
“Union Square” by Sara Teasdale
With the man I love who loves me not,
I walked in the street-lamps’ flare;
We watched the world go home that night
In a flood through Union Square.
I leaned to catch the words he said
That were light as a snowflake falling;
Ah well that he never leaned to hear
The words my heart was calling.
And on we walked and on we walked
Past the fiery lights of the picture shows
Where the girls with thirsty eyes go by
On the errand each man knows.
And on we walked and on we walked,
At the door at last we said good-bye;
I knew by his smile he had not heard
My heart’s unuttered cry.
With the man I love who loves me not
I walked in the street-lamps’ flare
But oh, the girls who can ask for love
In the lights of Union Square.
“Jewels” by Sara Teasdale
If I should see your eyes again,
I know how far their look would go
Back to a morning in the park
With sapphire shadows on the snow.
Or back to oak trees in the spring
When you unloosed my hair and kissed
The head that lay against your knees
In the leaf shadow’s amethyst.
And still another shining place
We would remember, how the dun
Wild mountain held us on its crest
One diamond morning white with sun.
But I will turn my eyes from you
As women turn to put away
The jewels they have worn at night
And cannot wear in sober day.
“Song Making” by Sara Teasdale
My heart cried like a beaten child
Ceaselessly all night long;
I had to take my own cries
And thread them into a song.
One was a cry at black midnight
And one when the first cock crew,
My heart was like a beaten child,
But no one ever knew.
Life, you have put me in your debt
And I must serve you long,
But oh, the debt is terrible
That must be paid in song.
“New Love and Old” by Sara Teasdale
In my heart the old love
Struggled with the new;
It was ghostly waking
All night through.
Dear things, kind things,
That my old love said,
Ranged themselves reproachfully
Round my bed.
But I could not heed them,
For I seemed to see
The eyes of my new love
Fixed on me.
Old love, old love,
How can I be true?
Shall I be faithless to myself
Or to you?
“In a Subway Station” by Sara Teasdale
After a year I came again to the place;
The tireless lights and the reverberation,
The angry thunder of trains that burrow the ground,
The hunted, hurrying people were still the same
But oh, another man beside me and not you!
Another voice and other eyes in mine!
And suddenly I turned and saw again
The gleaming curve of tracks, the bridge above
They were burned deep into my heart before,
The night I watched them to avoid your eyes,
When you were saying, “Oh, look up at me!”
When you were saying, “Will you never love me?”
And when I answered with a lie. Oh then
You dropped your eyes. I felt your utter pain.
I would have died to say the truth to you.
After a year I came again to the place
The hunted hurrying people were still the same…
“The End” by D. H. Lawrence (David Herbert Richards)
If I could have put you in my heart,
If but I could have wrapped you in myself,
How glad I should have been!
And now the chart
Of memory unrolls again to me
The course of our journey here, before we had to part.
And oh, that you had never, never been
Some of your selves, my love, that some
Of your several faces I had never seen!
And still they come before me, and they go,
And I cry aloud in the moments that intervene.
And oh, my love, as I rock for you to-night,
And have not any longer any hope
To heal the suffering, or make requite
For all your life of asking and despair,
I own that some of me is dead to-night.
“Buried Love” by Sara Teasdale
I have come to bury Love
Beneath a tree,
In the forest tall and black
Where none can see.
I shall put no flowers at his head,
Nor stone at his feet,
For the mouth I loved so much
I shall go no more to his grave,
For the woods are cold.
I shall gather as much of joy
As my hands can hold.
I shall stay all day in the sun
Where the wide winds blow,
But oh, I shall cry at night
When none will know.
Sad Breakup Poems for Long Distance Relationships
“Dear Is the Memory of Our Wedded Lives” by Alfred Lord Tennyson
Dear is the memory of our wedded lives,
And dear the last embraces of our wives
And their warm tears; but all hath suffer’d change;
For surely now our household hearths are cold,
Our sons inherit us, our looks are strange,
And we should come like ghosts to trouble joy.
Or else the island princes over-bold
Have eat our substance, and the minstrel sings
Before them of the ten years’ war in Troy,
And our great deeds, as half-forgotten things.
Is there confusion in the little isle?
Let what is broken so remain.
The Gods are hard to reconcile;
‘T is hard to settle order once again.
There is confusion worse than death,
Trouble on trouble, pain on pain,
Long labor unto aged breath,
Sore task to hearts worn out by many wars
And eyes grown dim with gazing on the pilot-stars.
“Sonnet 8” by Alan Seeger
Oh, love of woman, you are known to be
A passion sent to plague the hearts of men;
For every one you bring felicity
Bringing rebuffs and wretchedness to ten.
I have been oft where human life sold cheap
And seen men’s brains spilled out about their ears
And yet that never cost me any sleep;
I lived untroubled and I shed no tears.
Fools prate how war is an atrocious thing;
I always knew that nothing it implied
Equalled the agony of suffering
Of him who loves and loves unsatisfied.
War is a refuge to a heart like this;
Love only tells it what true torture is.
“Cloudy Evening” by Alfred Lichtenstein
The sky is swollen with tears and melancholy.
Only far off, where its foul vapors burst,
Green glow pours down. The houses,
Gray grimaces, are fiendishly bloated with mist.
Yellowish lights are beginning to gleam.
A stout father with wife and children dozes.
Painted women are practicing their dances.
Grotesque mimes strut towards the theater.
Jokers shriek, foul connoisseurs of men:
The day is dead… and a name remains!
Powerful men gleam in girls’ eyes.
A woman yearns for her beloved woman.
“Sonnet 10” by Alan Seeger
I have sought Happiness, but it has been
A lovely rainbow, baffling all pursuit,
And tasted Pleasure, but it was a fruit
More fair of outward hue than sweet within.
Renouncing both, a flake in the ferment
Of battling hosts that conquer or recoil,
There only, chastened by fatigue and toil,
I knew what came the nearest to content.
For there at least my troubled flesh was free
From the gadfly Desire that plagued it so;
Discord and Strife were what I used to know,
Heartaches, deception, murderous jealousy;
By War transported far from all of these,
Amid the clash of arms I was at peace.
“A Shropshire Lad 13” by Alfred Edward Housman
When I was one-and-twenty
I heard a wise man say,
“Give crowns and pounds and guineas
But not your heart away;
Give pearls away and rubies
But keep your fancy free.”
But I was one-and-twenty,
No use to talk to me.
When I was one-and-twenty
I heard him say again,
“The heart out of the bosom
Was never given in vain;
‘Tis paid with sighs a plenty
And sold for endless rue.”
And I am two-and-twenty,
And oh, ’tis true, ’tis true.
“At Sea” by Algernon Charles Swinburne
‘Farewell and adieu’ was the burden prevailing
Long since in the chant of a home-faring crew;
And the heart in us echoes, with laughing or wailing,
Farewell and adieu.
Each year that we live shall we sing it anew,
With a water untravelled before us for sailing
And a water behind us that wrecks may bestrew.
The stars of the past and the beacons are paling,
The heavens and the waters are hoarier of hue:
But the heart in us chants not an all unavailing
Farewell and adieu.
“You Will Hear Thunder” by Anna Akhmatova
You will hear thunder and remember me,
And think: she wanted storms. The rim
Of the sky will be the colour of hard crimson,
And your heart, as it was then, will be on fire.
That day in Moscow, it will all come true,
when, for the last time, I take my leave,
And hasten to the heights that I have longed for,
Leaving my shadow still to be with you.
“When Love Goes” by Sara Teasdale
O mother, I am sick of love,
I cannot laugh nor lift my head,
My bitter dreams have broken me,
I would my love were dead.
“Drink of the draught I brew for thee,
Thou shalt have quiet in its stead.”
Where is the silver in the rain,
Where is the music in the sea,
Where is the bird that sang all day
To break my heart with melody?
“The night thou badst Love fly away,
He hid them all from thee.”
“White Night” by Anna Akhmatova
I haven’t locked the door,
Nor lit the candles,
You don’t know, don’t care,
That tired I haven’t the strength
To decide to go to bed.
Seeing the fields fade in
The sunset murk of pine-needles,
And to know all is lost,
That life is a cursed hell:
I’ve got drunk
On your voice in the doorway.
I was sure you’d come back.
“Ballade of Forgotten Loves” by Arthur Grissom
Some poets sing of sweethearts dead,
Some sing of true loves far away;
Some sing of those that others wed,
And some of idols turned to clay.
I sing a pensive roundelay
To sweethearts of a doubtful lot,
The passions vanished in a day,
The little loves that I’ve forgot.
For, as the happy years have sped,
And golden dreams have changed to gray,
How oft the flame of love was fed
By glance, or smile, from Maud or May,
When wayward Cupid was at play;
Mere fancies, formed of who knows what,
But still my debt I ne’er can pay,
The little loves that I’ve forgot.
O joyous hours forever fled!
O sudden hopes that would not stay!
Held only by the slender thread
Of memory that’s all astray.
Their very names I cannot say.
Time’s will is done, I know them not;
But blessings on them all, I pray,
The little loves that I’ve forgot.
Sweetheart, why foolish fears betray?
Ours is the one true lovers’ knot;
Note well the burden of my lay,
The little loves that I’ve forgot.
“Night” by Anne Brontë
I love the silent hour of night,
For blissful dreams may then arise,
Revealing to my charmed sight
What may not bless my waking eyes!
And then a voice may meet my ear
That death has silenced long ago;
And hope and rapture may appear
Instead of solitude and woe.
Cold in the grave for years has lain
The form it was my bliss to see,
And only dreams can bring again
The darling of my heart to me.
“That Out of Sight Is Out of Mind” by Arthur Hugh Clough
That out of sight is out of mind
Is true of most we leave behind;
It is not sure, nor can be true,
My own and only love, of you.
They were my friends, ’twas sad to part;
Almost a tear began to start;
But yet as things run on they find
That out of sight is out of mind.
For men, that will not idlers be,
Must lend their hearts to things they see;
And friends who leave them far behind,
When out of sight are out of mind.
I blame it not; I think that when
The cold and silent meet again,
Kind hearts will yet as erst be kind,
‘Twas ‘out of sight’, ‘was out of mind.’
I knew it when we parted, well,
I knew it, but was loth to tell;
I felt before, what now I find,
That ‘out of sight’ is ‘out of mind.’
That friends, however friends they were,
Still deal with things as things occur,
And that, excepting for the blind,
What’s out of sight is out of mind.
But love, the poets say, is blind;
So out of sight and out of mind
Need not, nor will, I think, be true,
My own and only love, of you.
“The Vow Forsworn” by Charles Hamilton Musgrove
Unweariedly he watches for the sign,
The sign I promised from the farthest goal,
My lover of a world no longer mine,
My human lover with his human soul.
Unweariedly he waits from day to day,
Nor knows, as I know now, that when we meet,
‘Twill be as dewdrop on the hawthorn spray,–
The ultimate of God at last complete.
He still remembers that my eyes were blue,
Still dreams the autumn russet of my hair;
“In God’s own time,” he said, “I’ll come to you;
You will be waiting; I will find you there!”
But now I know that he must never hear
The message that I promised to impart,
For should I breathe the secret in his ear
His soul would hearken–but ‘twould break his heart!
“Parting” by Luis G. Dato
Upon a path we lingered
When skies were overcast,
She knew not I was doubting
If love had come at last.
In her I felt arising
The pity Christ thought of––
To me naught else did matter
If only she could love.
To me unkind was pity,
And hurting, gratitude,
My love was more than kindness,
For thanks from her too good.
She said in lasting friendship
How happy we could be––
She did not know her hatred
Less painful were to me.
I said if love she could not,
’T were better to forget,
That in the flush of summer,
Upon that lane we met.
“Echo” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
Come to me in the silence of the night;
Come in the speaking silence of a dream;
Come with soft rounded cheeks and eyes as bright
As sunlight on a stream;
Come back in tears,
O memory, hope, love of finished years.
Oh dream how sweet, too sweet, too bitter sweet,
Whose wakening should have been in Paradise,
Where souls brimfull of love abide and meet;
Where thirsting longing eyes
Watch the slow door
That opening, letting in, lets out no more.
Yet come to me in dreams, that I may live
My very life again though cold in death:
Come back to me in dreams, that I may give
Pulse for pulse, breath for breath:
Speak low, lean low,
As long ago, my love, how long ago!
“If You Should Go” by Countee Cullen
Love, leave me like the light,
The gently passing day;
We would not know, but for the night,
When it has slipped away.
So many hopes have fled,
Have left me but the name
Of what they were. When love is dead,
Go thou, beloved, the same.
Go quietly; a dream
When done, should leave no trace
That it has lived, except a gleam
Across the dreamer’s face.
““Farewell” Is on My Tongue” by Paulus Silentarius
“Farewell” is on my tongue, but I hold in the word with a wrench and still abide near thee. For I shudder at this horrid parting as at the bitter night of hell. Indeed thy light is like the daylight; but that is mute, while thou bringest me that talk, sweeter than the Sirens, on which all my soul’s hopes hang.
“Yesterday and To-Morrow” by Paul Laurence Dunbar
Yesterday I held your hand,
Reverently I pressed it,
And its gentle yieldingness
From my soul I blessed it.
But to-day I sit alone,
Sad and sore repining;
Must our gold forever know
Flames for the refining?
Yesterday I walked with you,
Could a day be sweeter?
Life was all a lyric song
Set to tricksy meter.
Ah, to-day is like a dirge,—
Place my arms around you,
Let me feel the same dear joy
As when first I found you.
Let me once retrace my steps,
From these roads unpleasant,
Let my heart and mind and soul
All ignore the present.
Yesterday the iron seared
And to-day means sorrow.
Pause, my soul, arise, arise,
Look where gleams the morrow.
“Oh Day of Fire and Sun” by Sara Teasdale
Oh day of fire and sun,
Pure as a naked flame,
Blue sea, blue sky and dun
Sands where he spoke my name;
Laughter and hearts so high
That the spirit flew off free,
Lifting into the sky
Diving into the sea;
Oh day of fire and sun
Like a crystal burning,
Slow days go one by one,
But you have no returning.
“In a Railroad Station” by Sara Teasdale
We stood in the shrill electric light,
Dumb and sick in the whirling din
We who had all of love to say
And a single second to say it in.
“Good-by!” “Good-by!” you turned to go,
I felt the train’s slow heavy start,
You thought to see me cry, but oh
My tears were hidden in my heart.
Sad Breakup Poems That Rhyme
“Illic Jacet” by Alfred Edward Housman
Oh hard is the bed they have made him,
And common the blanket and cheap;
But there he will lie as they laid him:
Where else could you trust him to sleep?
To sleep when the bugle is crying
And cravens have heard and are brave,
When mothers and sweethearts are sighing
And lads are in love with the grave.
Oh dark is the chamber and lonely,
And lights and companions depart;
But lief will he lose them and only
Behold the desire of his heart.
And low is the roof, but it covers
A sleeper content to repose;
And far from his friends and his lovers
He lies with the sweetheart he chose.
“The True Lover” by Alfred Edward Housman
From A Shropshire Lad
The lad came to the door at night,
When lovers crown their vows,
And whistled soft and out of sight
In shadow of the boughs.
“I shall not vex you with my face
Henceforth, my love, for aye;
So take me in your arms a space
Before the east is grey.”
“When I from hence away am past
I shall not find a bride,
And you shall be the first and last
I ever lay beside.”
She heard and went and knew not why;
Her heart to his she laid;
Light was the air beneath the sky
But dark under the shade.
“Oh do you breathe, lad, that your breast
Seems not to rise and fall,
And here upon my bosom prest
There beats no heart at all?”
“Oh loud, my girl, it once would knock,
You should have felt it then;
But since for you I stopped the clock
It never goes again.”
“Oh lad, what is it, lad, that drips
Wet from your neck on mine?
What is it falling on my lips,
My lad, that tastes of brine?”
“Oh like enough ’tis blood, my dear,
For when the knife has slit
The throat across from ear to ear
‘Twill bleed because of it.”
Under the stars the air was light
But dark below the boughs,
The still air of the speechless night,
When lovers crown their vows.
“Think Not That the Heart Is Devoid of Emotion” by Alfred Castner King
Think not that the heart is devoid of emotion,
Because of a countenance rugged and stern,
The bosom may hide the most fervent devotion,
As shadowy forests hide floweret and fern;
As the pearls which are down in the depths of the ocean,
The heart may have treasures which few can discern.
Think not the heart barren, because no reflection
Is flashed from the depths of its secret embrace;
External appearance may baffle detection,
And yet the heart beat with an ethical grace:
The breast may be charged with the truest affection
And never betray it by action or face.
“To W.C. Macready” by Alfred Lord Tennyson
Farewell, Macready, since to-night we part;
Full-handed thunders often have confessed
Thy power, well-used to move the public breast.
We thank thee with our voice, and from the heart.
Farewell, Macready, since this night we part,
Go, take thine honors home; rank with the best,
Garrick and statelier Kemble, and the rest
Who made a nation purer through their art.
Thine is it that our drama did not die,
Nor flicker down to brainless pantomine,
And those gilt gauds men-children swarm to see.
Farewell, Macready, moral, grave, sublime;
Our Shakespeare’s bland and universal eye
Dwells pleased, through twice a hundred years, on thee.
“Missed” by Alfred Castner King
Pity the child who never feels
A mother’s fond caress;
That childish smile a void conceals
Of aching loneliness.
Pity the heart which loves in vain,
What balm or mystic spell
Can soothe that bosom’s secret pain,
The pain it may not tell?
Pity those missed by Cupid’s darts,
For ’twas ordained for such,
Who love at random, but whose hearts
Feel no responsive touch.
“Regrets” by Alice Christiana Thompson Meynell
As, when the seaward ebbing tide doth pour
Out by the low sand spaces,
The parting waves slip back to clasp the shore
With lingering embraces,–
So in the tide of life that carries me
From where thy true heart dwells,
Waves of my thoughts and memories turn to thee
With lessening farewells;
Waving of hands; dreams, when the day forgets;
A care half lost in cares;
The saddest of my verses; dim regrets;
Thy name among my prayers.
I would the day might come, so waited for,
So patiently besought,
When I, returning, should fill up once more
Thy desolated thought;
And fill thy loneliness that lies apart
In still, persistent pain.
Shall I content thee, O thou broken heart,
As the tide comes again,
And brims the little sea-shore lakes, and sets
Seaweeds afloat, and fills
The silent pools, rivers and rivulets
Among the inland hills?
“Dead Love” by Algernon Charles Swinburne
Dead love, by treason slain, lies stark,
White as a dead stark-stricken dove:
None that pass by him pause to mark
His heart, that strained and yearned and strove
As toward the sundawn strives the lark,
Is cold as all the old joy thereof.
Dead men, re-risen from dust, may hark
When rings the trumpet blown above:
It will not raise from out the dark
“Parted” by Alice Christiana Thompson Meynell
Farewell to one now silenced quite,
Sent out of hearing, out of sight,–
My friend of friends, whom I shall miss.
He is not banished, though, for this,–
Nor he, nor sadness, nor delight.
Though I shall walk with him no more,
A low voice sounds upon the shore.
He must not watch my resting-place
But who shall drive a mournful face
From the sad winds about my door?
I shall not hear his voice complain,
But who shall stop the patient rain?
His tears must not disturb my heart,
But who shall change the years, and part
The world from every thought of pain?
Although my life is left so dim,
The morning crowns the mountain-rim;
Joy is not gone from summer skies,
Nor innocence from children’s eyes,
And all these things are part of him.
He is not banished, for the showers
Yet wake this green warm earth of ours.
How can the summer but be sweet?
I shall not have him at my feet,
And yet my feet are on the flowers.
“A Flower-Piece by Fantin” by Algernon Charles Swinburne
Heart’s ease or pansy, pleasure or thought,
Which would the picture give us of these?
Surely the heart that conceived it sought
Surely by glad and divine degrees
The heart impelling the hand that wrought
Wrought comfort here for a soul’s disease.
Deep flowers, with lustre and darkness fraught,
From glass that gleams as the chill still seas
Lean and lend for a heart distraught
“Love Arm’d” by Aphra Behn
Love in Fantastique Triumph satt,
Whilst bleeding Hearts around him flow’d,
For whom Fresh pains he did create,
And strange Tryanic power he show’d;
From thy Bright Eyes he took his fire,
Which round about, in sport he hurl’d;
But ’twas from mine he took desire,
Enough to undo the Amorous World.
From me he took his sighs and tears,
From thee his Pride and Crueltie;
From me his Languishments and Feares,
And every Killing Dart from thee;
Thus thou and I, the God have arm’d,
And sett him up a Deity;
But my poor Heart alone is harm’d,
Whilst thine the Victor is, and free.
“Sonnet 19” by Anna Seward
Farewell, false Friend! – our scenes of kindness close!
To cordial looks, to sunny smiles farewell!
To sweet consolings, that can grief expel,
And every joy soft sympathy bestows!
For alter’d looks, where truth no longer glows,
Thou hast prepar’d my heart; – and it was well
To bid thy pen th’ unlook’d for story tell,
Falsehood avow’d, that shame, nor sorrow knows. –
O! when we meet, – (to meet we’re destin’d, try
To avoid it as thou may’st) on either brow,
Nor in the stealing consciousness of eye,
Be seen the slightest trace of what, or how
We once were to each other; – nor one sigh
Flatter with weak regret a broken vow!
“Karolin’s Song” by Ben Jonson
Though I am young, and cannot tell,
Either what love, or death is well,
Yet I have heard, yet both bear darts,
And both do aim at human hearts:
And then again, I have been told
Love wounds with heat, as death with cold;
So that I fear, they do but bring
Extremes to touch, and mean one thing.
As in a ruin, we it call
One thing to be blown up, or fall;
Or to our end, like way may have,
By a flash of lightning, or a wave:
So love’s inflamed shaft, or brand,
May kill as soon as death’s cold hand;
Except love’s fires the virtue have
To fright the frost from out the grave.
“The Fountain of Blood” by Charles Baudelaire
Sometimes it seems my blood spurts out in gobs
As if it were a fountain’s pulsing sobs;
I clearly hear it mutter as it goes,
Yet cannot find the wound from which it flows.
Then through the city, coursing in the lists,
It travels, forming islands in its midst,
Seeing that every creature will be fed
And staining nature its flamboyant red.
Oh, I have asked of wine the magic way
To drug my terrors, even for a day;
Wine clears the eye, makes hearing more distinct!
I’ve sought forgetfulness in love, but failed,
Since love for me is just a bed of nails
Made to provide these women bloody drink!
“Laurana’s Song: For “A Lady of Venice.”” by Bliss Carman (William)
Who’ll have the crumpled pieces of a heart?
Let him take mine!
Who’ll give his whole of passion for a part,
And call’t divine?
Who’ll have the soiled remainder of desire?
Who’ll warm his fingers at a burnt-out fire?
Who’ll drink the lees of love, and cast i’ the mire
The nobler wine?
Let him come here, and kiss me on the mouth,
And have his will!
Love dead and dry as summer in the South
When winds are still
And all the leafage shrivels in the heat!
Let him come here and linger at my feet
Till he grow weary with the over-sweet,
And die, or kill.
“Touching “Never”” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
Because you never yet have loved me, dear,
Think you you never can nor ever will?
Surely while life remains hope lingers still,
Hope the last blossom of life’s dying year.
Because the season and mine age grow sere,
Shall never Spring bring forth her daffodil,
Shall never sweeter Summer feast her fill
Of roses with the nightingales they hear?
If you had loved me, I not loving you,
If you had urged me with the tender plea
Of what our unknown years to come might do
(Eternal years, if Time should count too few),
I would have owned the point you pressed on me,
Was possible, or probable, or true.
“Love Lies Bleeding” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
Love that is dead and buried, yesterday
Out of his grave rose up before my face,
No recognition in his look, no trace
Of memory in his eyes dust-dimmed and grey.
While I, remembering, found no word to say,
But felt my quickened heart leap in its place;
Caught afterglow thrown back from long set days,
Caught echoes of all music passed away.
Was this indeed to meet? – I mind me yet
In youth we met when hope and love were quick,
We parted with hope dead, but love alive:
I mind me how we parted then heart sick,
Remembering, loving, hopeless, weak to strive: –
Was this to meet? Not so, we have not met.
“Song” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
She sat and sang alway
By the green margin of a stream,
Watching the fishes leap and play
Beneath the glad sunbeam.
I sat and wept alway
Beneath the moon’s most shadowy beam,
Watching the blossoms of the May
Weep leaves into the stream.
I wept for memory;
She sang for hope that is so fair:
My tears were swallowed by the sea;
Her songs died on the air.
“Grown and Flown” by Christina Georgina Rossetti
I loved my love from green of Spring
Until sere Autumn’s fall;
But now that leaves are withering
How should one love at all?
One heart’s too small
For hunger, cold, love, everything.
I loved my love on sunny days
Until late Summer’s wane;
But now that frost begins to glaze
How should one love again?
Nay, love and pain
Walk wide apart in diverse ways.
I loved my love – alas to see
That this should be, alas!
I thought that this could scarcely be,
Yet has it come to pass:
Sweet sweet love was,
Now bitter bitter grown to me.
“Three Golden Threads (After de Lisle.)” by Ameen Rihani
Like yonder swallow, I would soar away,—
Above the sea, far from this buzzing mart ;
But how can I? A cruel, little fay
Has fettered with three golden threads my heart.
Her honeyed tongue the one ; her eyes the other ;
The third her lips ; and that completes her art.
No fruits from other gardens can I gather,
For she has tied with golden threads my heart.
O, how I would asunder rend my chain,
And from the tears and pangs of love depart ;
Ah, no! ’tis better that I die in pain
Than break the golden threads of my poor heart.
“Renunciation” by Dorothy Parker
Chloe’s hair, no doubt, was brighter;
Lydia’s mouth more sweetly sad;
Hebe’s arms were rather whiter;
Languorous-lidded Helen had
Eyes more blue than e’er the sky was;
Lalage’s was subtler stuff;
Still, you used to think that I was
Now you’re casting yearning glances
At the pale Penelope;
Cutting in on Claudia’s dances;
Taking Iris out to tea.
Iole you find warm-hearted;
Zoë’s cheek is far from rough—
Don’t you think it’s time we parted? . . .
“Now at Liberty” by Dorothy Parker
Little white love, your way you’ve taken;
Now I am left alone, alone.
Little white love, my heart’s forsaken.
(Whom shall I get by telephone?)
Well do I know there’s no returning;
Once you go out, it’s done, it’s done.
All of my days are gray with yearning.
(Nevertheless, a girl needs fun.)
Little white love, perplexed and weary,
Sadly your banner fluttered down.
Sullen the days, and dreary, dreary.
(Which of the boys is still in town?)
Radiant and sure, you came a-flying;
Puzzled, you left on lagging feet.
Slow in my breast, my heart is dying.
(Nevertheless, a girl must eat.)
Little white love, I hailed you gladly;
Now I must wave you out of sight.
Ah, but you used me badly, badly.
(Who’d like to take me out tonight?)
All of the blundering words I’ve spoken,
Little white love, forgive, forgive.
Once you went out, my heart fell, broken.
(Nevertheless, a girl must live.)
“The Burned Child” by Dorothy Parker
Love has had his way with me.
This my heart is torn and maimed
Since he took his play with me.
Cruel well the bow-boy aimed,
Shot, and saw the feathered shaft
Dripping bright and bitter red.
He that shrugged his wings and laughed––
Better had he left me dead.
Sweet, why do you plead me, then,
Who have bled so sore of that?
Could I bear it once again? . . .
Drop a hat, dear, drop a hat!
“But Not to Me” by Sara Teasdale
The April night is still and sweet
With flowers on every tree;
Peace comes to them on quiet feet,
But not to me.
My peace is hidden in his breast
Where I shall never be;
Love comes to-night to all the rest,
But not to me.
“Had We Not Met” by Freeman Edwin Miller
Had we not met, the brooding woe
And all the griefs that greater grow,
Might not have been, and happy-wise
Our lives have laughed with lullabies
And quaffed such joys as few may know.
Our days beneath embittered skies
Where anguish moans and sorrow cries,
Might not have wept and wandered so,
Had we not met!
But ah, my darling! All we prize,–
Love and sweet trust that never dies,
Wild yearnings that with constant flow
From kindred heart to bosom go,–
Would never in our souls had rise,
Had we not met!
Short Breakup Poems
“Could Man Be Drunk for Ever” by Alfred Edward Housman
Could man be drunk for ever
With liquor, love, or fights,
Lief should I rouse at morning
And lief lie down of nights.
But men at whiles are sober
And think by fits and starts,
And if they think, they fasten
Their hands upon their hearts.
“Love Song” by Alfred Lichtenstein
Your eyes are bright lands.
Your looks are little birds,
Handkerchiefs gently waving goodbye.
In your smile I rest as though in bobbing boats.
Your little stories are made of silk.
I must behold you always.
“After the Quarrel” by Adam Lindsay Gordon
Laurence Raby’s Chamber. Laurence enters, a little the worse for liquor.
He never gave me a chance to speak,
And he call’d her, worse than a dog,
The girl stood up with a crimson cheek,
And I fell’d him there like a log.
I can feel the blow on my knuckles yet,
He feels it more on his brow.
In a thousand years we shall all forget
The things that trouble us now.
“Wasted Love” by Algernon Charles Swinburne
What shall be done for sorrow
With love whose race is run?
Where help is none to borrow,
What shall be done?
In vain his hands have spun
The web, or drawn the furrow:
No rest their toil hath won.
His task is all gone thorough,
And fruit thereof is none:
And who dare say to-morrow
What shall be done?
“Departure” by Anna Akhmatova
Although this land is not my own,
I will remember its inland sea
and the waters that are so cold
the sand as white
as old bones, the pine trees
strangely red where the sun comes down.
I cannot say if it is our love,
or the day, that is ending.
“Conditions of Living” by Ben Jonson
Living a whole life has three conditions:
absorbing work which demands and brings fulfilment,
a group of friends with whom to exchange minds,
and a full love to be lost in all the time.
Of these I have the easier two,
but lack the third in lacking you.
“Finis” by Waring Cuney
Now that our love has drifted
To a quiet close,
Leaving the empty ache
That always follows when beauty goes;
Now that you and I,
Who stood tip-toe on earth
To touch our fingers to the sky,
Have turned away
To allow our little love to die—
Go, dear, seek again the magic touch.
But if you are wise,
As I shall be wise,
You will not again
Love over much.
“Why I No Longer Love Thee?” by Sadakichi Hartmann
Why I no longer love thee?
Ask why summer has fled,
Thy autumn is dead with its garnet glow,
Why the sea is gray, and the sky is gray;
Why bitter gales o’er the salt flats blow,
Where the sea-fowl sport in ghoulish play
And the pods of the beach-pea stand withered
On the long-curved rifts of dream-torn sand;
Why the shore is scarred by time’s rough hand,
And ships that heel on wintry seas
Are wrecked on the ashen strand!
“The Heart’s House” by Sara Teasdale
My heart is but a little house
With room for only three or four,
And it was filled before you knocked
Upon the door.
I longed to bid you come within,
I knew that I should love you well,
But if you came the rest must go
Elsewhere to dwell.
For you would never be content
With just a corner in my room,
Yea, if you came the rest must go
Into the gloom.
And so, farewell, O friend, my friend!
Nay, I could weep a little too,
But I shall only smile and say
Farewell to you.
“The Flowers and My Love” by Ono no Komachi
The flowers and my love,
Passed away under the rain,
While I idly looked upon them:
Where is my yester-love?
“Tides” by Sara Teasdale
Love in my heart was a fresh tide flowing
Where the star-like sea gulls soar;
The sun was keen and the foam was blowing
High on the rocky shore.
But now in the dusk the tide is turning,
Lower the sea gulls soar,
And the waves that rose in resistless yearning
Are broken forevermore.
“November” by Sara Teasdale
The world is tired, the year is old,
The fading leaves are glad to die,
The wind goes shivering with cold
Where the brown reeds are dry.
Our love is dying like the grass,
And we who kissed grow coldly kind,
Half glad to see our old love pass
Like leaves along the wind.
“Debt” by Sara Teasdale
What do I owe to you
Who loved me deep and long?
You never gave my spirit wings
Or gave my heart a song.
But oh, to him I loved,
Who loved me not at all,
I owe the open gate
That led through heaven’s wall.
“Deep in the Night” by Sara Teasdale
Deep in the night the cry of a swallow,
Under the stars he flew,
Keen as pain was his call to follow
Over the world to you.
Love in my heart is a cry forever
Lost as the swallow’s flight,
Seeking for you and never, never
Stilled by the stars at night.
“Dead Love” by Sara Teasdale
God let me listen to your voice,
And look upon you for a space,
And then he took your voice away,
And dropped a veil before your face.
God let me look within your eyes,
And touch for once your clinging hand,
And then he left me all alone,
And took you to the Silent Land.
I cannot weep, I cannot pray,
My heart has very silent grown,
I only watch how God gives love,
And then leaves lovers all alone.
“Nightfall” by Sara Teasdale
We will never walk again
As we used to walk at night,
Watching our shadows lengthen
Under the gold street-light
When the snow was new and white.
We will never walk again
Slowly, we two,
In spring when the park is sweet
With midnight and with dew,
And the passers-by are few.
I sit and think of it all,
And the blue June twilight dies,
Down in the clanging square
A street-piano cries
And stars come out in the skies.
“May” by Sara Teasdale
The wind is tossing the lilacs,
The new leaves laugh in the sun,
And the petals fall on the orchard wall,
But for me the spring is done.
Beneath the apple blossoms
I go a wintry way,
For love that smiled in April
Is false to me in May.
“A Shropshire Lad 18” by Alfred Edward Housman
Oh, when I was in love with you,
Then I was clean and brave,
And miles around the wonder grew
How well did I behave.
And now the fancy passes by,
And nothing will remain,
And miles around they’ll say that I
Am quite myself again.