Poems about life are an artistic way of recalling or collecting your life experiences. Writing a poem about your experiences can help you heal and reflect on your deeds. A poem about life validates your experiences and shows you are not alone in your struggles when you read it. The following collection of poems looks at various facets of life, and they appreciate life for all the beautiful experiences. Have a look!
26 Beautiful Poems About Life
1. The Small Claim Of Bones
What my body knows
is not a lie it’s not
a lie I tell you it is not
it’s nothing short of truth
and nothing larger
my past lodges
in my marrow and if
I wanted a transplant
There’d be no match
Others’ sorrows dwarf
my petty traumas still
these bones are mine
when they creak
when they moan
when they whine
there’s only one thing
I can claim these bones
are mine I tell you
they are mine and kind
to abandon no thing
that makes this pulse
no one but me.
- By Cindy Williams Gutiérrez
Children, ye have not lived, to you it seems
Life is a lovely stalactite of dreams,
Or carnival of careless joys that leap
About your hearts like billows on the deep
In flames of amber and of amethyst.
Children, ye have not lived, ye but exist
Till some resistless hour shall rise and move
Your hearts to wake and hunger after love,
And thirst with passionate longing for the things
That burn your brows with blood-red sufferings.
Till ye have battled with great grief and fears,
And borne the conflict of dream-shattering years,
Wounded with fierce desire and worn with strife,
Children, ye have not lived: for this is life.
- By Sarojini Naidu
3. Later Life
Something this foggy day, a something which
Is neither of this fog nor of today,
Has set me dreaming of the winds that play
Past certain cliffs, along one certain beach,
And turn the topmost edge of waves to spray:
Ah pleasant pebbly strand so far away,
So out of reach while quite within my reach,
As out of reach as India or Cathay!
I am sick of where I am and where I am not,
I am sick of foresight and of memory,
I am sick of all I have and all I see,
I am sick of self, and there is nothing new;
Oh weary impatient patience of my lot!
Thus with myself: how fares it, Friends, with you?
- By Christina Rossetti
4. My Life Was The Size Of My Life
My life was the size of my life.
Its rooms were room-sized,
its soul was the size of a soul.
In its background, mitochondria hummed,
above it sun, clouds, snow,
the transit of stars and planets.
It rode elevators, bullet trains,
various airplanes, a donkey.
It wore socks, shirts, its own ears and nose.
It ate, it slept, it opened
and closed its hands, its windows.
Others, I know, had lives larger.
Others, I know, had lives shorter.
The depth of lives, too, is different.
There were times my life and I made jokes together.
There were times we made bread.
Once, I grew moody and distant.
I told my life I would like some time,
I would like to try seeing others.
In a week, my empty suitcase and I returned.
I was hungry, then, and my life,
my life, too, was hungry, we could not keep
our hands off our clothes on
our tongues from
- By Jane Hirshfield
5. Each Moment Is Precious
Live in the moment,
Just take it all in.
Pay attention to everything,
Right there and right then.
Don’t let your mind wander
To what’s coming next.
Cherish this moment
And give it your best.
Don’t let tomorrow
Make you rush through today,
Or too many great moments
Will just go to waste.
And the person you’re with,
In that moment you share,
Give them all of your focus;
Be totally there.
Laugh till it hurts,
Let the tears drop.
Fill up each moment
With all that you’ve got.
Don’t miss the details;
The lesson is there.
Don’t get complacent;
Stay sharp and aware.
It can take but a moment
To change your life’s path.
And once it ticks by,
There is no going back.
In just 60 seconds,
You may make a new friend.
Find your true love,
Or see a life start or end.
You become who you are
In those moments you live.
And the growth’s not in taking
But in how much you give.
Life is just moments,
So precious and few.
Whether valued or squandered,
It’s all up to you!
- By Pat A. Fleming
What is our life? A play of passion,
Our mirth the music of division,
Our mother’s wombs the tiring-houses be,
Where we are dressed for this short comedy.
Heaven the judicious sharp spectator is,
That sits and marks still who doth act amiss.
Our graves that hide us from the setting sun
Are like drawn curtains when the play is done.
Thus march we, playing, to our latest rest,
Only we die in earnest, that’s no jest.
- By Sir Walter Raleigh
7. ‟Hope” Is The Thing With Feathers
‟Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –
And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –
I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
It asked a crumb – of me.
- By Emily Dickinson
8. Life Is A Privilege
Life is a privilege. Its youthful days
Shine with the radiance of continuous Mays.
To live, to breathe, to wonder and desire,
To feed with dreams the heart’s perpetual fire,
To thrill with virtuous passions, and to glow
With great ambitions – in one hour to know
The depths and heights of feeling – God! in truth,
How beautiful, how beautiful is youth!
Life is a privilege. Like some rare rose
The mysteries of the human mind unclose.
What marvels lie in the earth, and air, and sea!
What stores of knowledge wait our opening key!
What sunny roads of happiness lead out
Beyond the realms of indolence and doubt!
And what large pleasures smile upon and bless
The busy avenues of usefulness!
Life is a privilege. Thought the noontide fades
And shadows fall along the winding glades,
Though joy-blooms wither in the autumn air,
Yet the sweet scent of sympathy is there.
Pale sorrow leads us closer to our kind,
And in the serious hours of life we find
Depths in the souls of men which lend new worth
And majesty to this brief span of earth.
Life is a privilege. If some sad fate
Sends us alone to seek the exit gate,
If men forsake us and as shadows fall,
Still does the supreme privilege of all
Come in that reaching upward of the soul
To find the welcoming Presence at the goal,
And in the Knowledge that our feet have trod
Paths that led from, and must wind back, to God.
- By Ella Wheeler Wilcox
9. Dust Of Snow
The way a crow
Shook down on me
The dust of snow
From a hemlock tree
Has given my heart
A change of mood
And saved some part
Of a day I had rued.
- By Robert Frost
10. Changing The Past
The past is the past for a reason.
That is where it is supposed to stay,
But some cannot let it go.
In their heads it eats away
Until all their focus becomes
The person they used to be,
The mistakes they made in their life.
Oh, if only they could see
That you cannot change what happened,
No matter how hard you try,
No matter how much you think about it,
No matter how much you cry.
What happens in your lifetime
Happens for reasons unknown,
So you have to let the cards unfold.
Let your story be shown.
Don’t get wrapped up in the negative.
Be happy with what you have been given.
Live for today not tomorrow.
Get up, get out, and start living,
Because the past is the past for a reason.
It’s been, and now it is gone,
So stop trying to think of ways to fix it.
It’s done, it’s unchangeable; move on.
- By Donna
Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexatious to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs,
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Strive to be happy.
- By Max Ehrmann
12. The Road Not Taken
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
- By Robert Frost
13. Death And Life
’Twas in the grave-yard’s gruesome gloom
That May and I were mated;
We sneaked inside and on a tomb
Our love was consummated.
It’s quite all right, no doubt we’ll wed,
Our sin will go unchidden,
Ah! sweeter than the nuptial bed
Are ecstasies forbidden.
And as I held my sweetheart close,
And she was softly sighing,
I could not help but think of those
In peace below us lying.
Poor folks! No disrespect we meant,
And beg you’ll be forgiving;
We hopes the dead will not resent
The rapture of the living.
And when in death I, too, shall lie,
And lost to those who love me,
I wish two sweethearts roving by
Will plight their troth above me.
Oh do not think that I will grieve
To hear the vows they’re voicing,
And if their love new life conceive,
’Tis I will be rejoicing.
- By Robert William Service
14. Life Is Fine
I went down to the river,
I set down on the bank.
I tried to think but couldn’t,
So I jumped in and sank.
I came up once and hollered!
I came up twice and cried!
If that water hadn’t a-been so cold
I might’ve sunk and died.
But it was Cold in that water! It was cold!
I took the elevator
Sixteen floors above the ground.
I thought about my baby
And thought I would jump down.
I stood there and I hollered!
I stood there and I cried!
If it hadn’t a-been so high
I might’ve jumped and died.
But it was High up there! It was high!
So since I’m still here livin’,
I guess I will live on.
I could’ve died for love–
But for livin’ I was born
Though you may hear me holler,
And you may see me cry–
I’ll be dogged, sweet baby,
If you gonna see me die.
Life is fine! Fine as wine! Life is fine!
- By Langston Hughes
15. The Summer Day
Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean—
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down—
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
- By Mary Oliver
16. A Simple Plan
Simple Sam was a simple man.
He lived each day by a simple plan.
Enjoy your life and live while you can.
Make each day count and take a stand.
Stand on the left or stand on the right,
Whichever one you think is right.
Live each day as if your last.
Life’s too short and gone too fast.
- By Irwin Mercer
17. Finding Hope
I’ve always viewed life from the side lines,
Just watching it passing me by.
In the past, too afraid to just let go and live,
And lately too tired to try.
I’ve envied the people around me
So invested in living each day,
While I spent my time hiding out from the world
And searching for ways to escape.
For most of my life I truly believed
I was here to help somebody else,
But now it’s so clear it was just an excuse.
To avoid living life for myself.
It’s sad that our lives and the pain we endure
Can weaken our strength to move on,
But if we get lost in the scars of our past,
Without knowing our lives will be gone.
It’s true, people are disappointing,
They can turn in the blink of an eye,
But we can’t avoid hurting each other,
When we all want a chance at this life.
But there’s something I’ve learned through the wisdom of age,
A truth about all of our lives,
And that is no matter what path we each take,
In the end, we just want to survive.
So the time has now come to conquer my fears
And to stand up and face a new day.
Let the hurts of my past wash away with my tears
And stop letting my life slip away.
- By Pat A. Fleming
18. Just Being Me
The life I seek must be fast”
The speed of life makes me laugh!
Death’s just around the corner for
a Queer like me!
Well so they say all of them Freaks.
Homophobia I really do detest
What I am is what I do best!
Like if you want, Answer! This ain’t no test
If you like me, “Great,” then we’re friends
If you hate me don’t make me get upset!
I’m just a Dike whom nobody Straight likes
Well forget you all, cause we love each other
my Baby and I!
You don’t have to shake my hand,
I’m not asking you to stare.
If you don’t like what you see,
then get the Hell out of here!
I am what I am,
So please understand
Even if you don’t
“Who really gives a damn?”
- By Elsa Nora
19. You Will Never See Me Fall
You may see me struggle,
but you won’t see me fall.
Regardless if I’m weak or not,
I’m going to stand tall.
Everyone says life is easy,
but truly living it is not.
Times get hard,
and constantly get put on the spot.
I’m going to wear the biggest smile,
even though I want to cry.
I’m going to fight to live,
even though I’m destined to die.
And even though it’s hard
and I may struggle through it all,
you may see me struggle…
but you will NEVER see me fall.
- By Joyce Alcantara
20. The Guest House
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
- By Rumi
21. Pain Ends
Breathe in the fresh air,
Put your mind at ease.
Let down your hair,
Let it flow in the breeze.
Let your eyes wander,
To all the beauty to be seen.
If those toxic thoughts you still do ponder,
Then let out a scream.
Scream until the pain is gone,
Until you no longer feel afraid.
Open your eyes to a new dawn,
Let the darkness fade.
No longer compare yourself
Or your flaws to others’ perfections.
Take the negativity off the shelf.
Focus on your direction.
Pick the sadness up off the floor,
Sweep it into the wind.
Close the door on self-hatred.
Never let it back in.
For the lies it would often tell you,
You will no longer agree.
Happiness and love are what you should hold onto.
They are whom you should give the key.
Pay no attention to the toxic thoughts,
Listen to those who adore everything you are.
Overthinking was what you once were taught,
But now those thoughts you put in a jar.
Focus on your goals,
Never lose your fight.
It’s time to open new scrolls.
Everything will be all right.
- By Katy A. Brown
22. Still I Rise
You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.
Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
’Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.
Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.
Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops,
Weakened by my soulful cries?
Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
’Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard.
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.
Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?
Out of the huts of history’s shame
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
- By Maya Angelou
23. My Inner Life
’Tis true my garments threadbare are,
And sorry poor I seem;
But inly I am richer far
Than any poet’s dream.
For I’ve a hidden life no one
Can ever hope to see;
A sacred sanctuary none
May share with me.
Aloof I stand from out the strife,
Within my heart a song;
By virtue of my inner life
I to myself belong.
Against man-ruling I rebel,
Yet do not fear defeat,
For to my secret citadel
I may retreat.
Oh you who have an inner life
Beyond this dismal day
With wars and evil rumours rife,
Go blessedly your way.
Your refuge hold inviolate;
Unto yourself be true,
And shield serene from sordid fate
The Real You.
- By Robert William Service
24. Against Dying
If the body is just a parable
about the body if breath
is a leash to hold the mind
then staying alive should be
easier than it is most sick
things become dead things
at twenty-four my liver was
already covered in fatty
rot my mother filled a tiny
coffin with picture frames
I spent the year drinking
from test tubes weeping
wherever I went somehow
it happened wellness crept
into me like a roach nibbling
through an eardrum for
a time the half minutes
of fire in my brainstem
made me want to pull out
my spine but even those
have become bearable so
how shall I live now
in the unexpected present
I spent so long in a lover’s
quarrel with my flesh
the peace seems over-
cautious too-polite I say
stop being cold or make
that blue bluer and it does
we speak to each other
in this code where every word
means obey I sit under
a poplar tree with a thermos
of chamomile feeling
useless as an oath against
dying I put a sugar cube
on my tongue and
swallow it like a pill.
- By Kaveh Akbar
25. Daisy Cutter
Pause here at the flower stand—mums
and gladiolas, purple carnations
dark as my heart. We are engaged
in a war, and I want to drag home
any distraction I can carry. Tonight
children will wake to bouquets of fire
that will take their breath away. Still,
I think of my life. The way you hold me,
sometimes, you could choke me.
There is no way to protect myself,
except by some brilliant defense. I want
the black iris with their sabered blooms.
I want the flame throwers: the peonies,
the sunflowers. I will cut down the beautiful ones
and let their nectared sweetness bleed
into the careless air. This is not the world
I’d hoped it could be. It is horrible,
the way we carry on. Last night, you catalogued
our arsenal. You taught me devastation
is a goal we announce in a celebration
of shrapnel. Our bombs shower
in anticipation of their marks. You said this
is to assure damage will be widely distributed.
What gruesome genius invents our brutal hearts?
When you touch me I am a stalk of green panic
and desire. Wait here while I decide which
of these sprigs of blossoming heartbreak I can afford
to bring into my home. Tonight dreams will erupt
in chaotic buds of flame. This is the world we have
arranged. It is horrible, this way we carry on.
- By Camille T. Dungy
26. Ode To Broken Things
Things get broken
like they were pushed
by an invisible, deliberate smasher.
It’s not my hands
It wasn’t the girls
with their hard fingernails
or the motion of the planet.
It wasn’t anything or anybody
It wasn’t the wind
It wasn’t the orange-colored noontime
Or night over the earth
It wasn’t even the nose or the elbow
Or the hips getting bigger
or the ankle
or the air.
The plate broke, the lamp fell
All the flower pots tumbled over
one by one. That pot
which overflowed with scarlet
in the middle of October,
it got tired from all the violets
and another empty one
rolled round and round and round
all through winter
until it was only the powder
of a flowerpot,
a broken memory, shining dust.
And that clock
the voice of our lives,
thread of our weeks,
one by one, so many hours
for honey and silence
for so many births and jobs,
that clock also
and its delicate blue guts
among the broken glass
its wide heart
Life goes on grinding up
glass, wearing out clothes
and what lasts through time
is like an island on a ship in the sea,
surrounded by dangerous fragility
by merciless waters and threats.
Let’s put all our treasures together
— the clocks, plates, cups cracked by the cold —
into a sack and carry them
to the sea
and let our possessions sink
into one alarming breaker
that sounds like a river.
May whatever breaks
be reconstructed by the sea
with the long labor of its tides.
So many useless things
which nobody broke
but which got broken anyway.
- By Pablo Neruda
These soulful poems about life make you pause a moment and reflect upon wher you stand and how are you spending your time here. No matter in what stage and circumstances of life you are in, these poems urge you t hold on and give it your best possible shot. Whether it’s a win, celebration, and happy times, or certain troubling phases of your life, everything is fleeting and momentary. So share your joys to multiply your celebration and share your pain to help yourself heal better. Take courage and hope from the words above and march on with your head held high and that spring in your steps.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a good poem starter?
Wishes, death, ups and downs of life, memories, experiences, and personal reflections are a few good poetry prompts.
Can a poem be a story?
Yes. Usually, narrative poems are like a story with a beginning, middle, and end. You have to use imagery and descriptive language to tell your story through the verses.