William Shakespeare Poems

Poems » william shakespeare

William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare (baptised 26 April 1564 23 April 1616) was an English poet and playwright, now widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's preeminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon" (or simply "The Bard"). His surviving works consist of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and several other poems. His plays have been translated into every major living language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright. Shakespeare was born and raised in Stratford-upon-Avon. At the age of 18 he married Anne Hathaway, who bore him three children: Susanna, and twins Hamnet and Judith. Between 1585 and 1592 he began a successful career in London as an actor, writer, and part-owner of the playing company the Lord Chamberlain's Men, later known as the King's Men. He appears to have retired to Stratford around 1613, where he died three years later. Few records of Shakespeare's private life survive, and there has been considerable speculation about such matters as his sexuality, religious beliefs, and whether the works attributed to him were written by others. Shakespeare produced most of his known work between 1590 and 1613. His early plays were mainly comedies and histories, genres he raised to the peak of sophistication and artistry by the end of the sixteenth century. Next he wrote mainly tragedies until about 1608, producing plays, such as Hamlet, King Lear, and Macbeth, considered some of the finest in the English language. In his last phase, he wrote tragicomedies and collaborated with other playwrights. Many of his plays were published in editions of varying quality and accuracy during his lifetime, and in 1623, two of his former theatrical colleagues published the First Folio, a collected edition of his dramatic works that included all but two of the plays now recognised as Shakespeare's. Shakespeare was a respected poet and playwright in his own day, but his reputation did not rise to its present heights until the nineteenth century. The Romantics, in particular, acclaimed Shakespeare's genius, and the Victorians hero-worshipped Shakespeare with a reverence that George Bernard Shaw called "bardolatry". In the twentieth century, his work was repeatedly adopted and rediscovered by new movements in scholarship and performance. His plays remain highly popular today and are consistently performed and reinterpreted in diverse cultural and political contexts throughout the world.

time long past
Like the ghost of a dear friend dead
Is Time long past.
A tone which is now forever... [read poem]
I met a traveller from an antique land,
Who said -- "two vast and trunkless legs of stone
... [read poem]
queen mab: part vi
"Throughout these infinite orbs of mingling light,
Of which yon earth is one, is wide diffus'd... [read poem]
The flower that smiles to-day
To-morrow dies;
All that we wish to stay
... [read poem]
the triumph of life
Swift as a spirit hastening to his task
Of glory & of good, the Sun sprang forth
Rejoi... [read poem]
the cloud
I bring fresh showers for the thirsting flowers,
From the seas and the streams;
I be... [read poem]
a lament
O world! O life! O time!
On whose last steps I climb,
Trembling at that where I had st... [read poem]
to night
Swiftly walk o'er the western wave,
Spirit of Night!
Out of the misty eastern cave... [read poem]
lines written in the bay of lerici
She left me at the silent time
When the moon had ceas'd to climb
The azure path of Heaven'... [read poem]
fear no more the heat o' the sun
GUIDERIUS. Feare no more the heate o' th' Sun,
Nor the furious Winter... [read poem]
hymn to intellectual beauty
The awful shadow of some unseen Power
Floats though unseen among us; visiting
... [read poem]
to the moon
Art thou pale for weariness
Of climbing heaven and gazing on the earth,
Wandering comp... [read poem]
the indian serenade
I arise from dreams of thee
In the first sweet sleep of night,
When the winds are breathin... [read poem]
A ship is floating in the harbour now,
A wind is hovering o'er the mountain's brow;... [read poem]
and like a dying lady, lean and pale
And like a dying lady, lean and pale,
Who totters forth, wrapp'd in a gauzy veil,
Out of h... [read poem]
hellas: chorus
The world's great age begins anew,
The golden years return,
The earth doth like a sn... [read poem]
to thine own self be true
Yet here, Laertes! Aboard, aboard for shame!
The wind sits in the shoulder of your sail,
A... [read poem]
mont blanc: lines written in the vale of chamouni
The everlasting universe of things
Flows through the mind, and rolls its rapid waves,
Now ... [read poem]
hymn of pan
From the forests and highlands
We come, we come;
From the river-girt islands,
... [read poem]
the question
I dreamed that, as I wandered by the way,
Bare Winter suddenly was changed to Spring,... [read poem]
lines: "when the lamp is shattered"
When the lamp is shattered
The light in the dust lies dead--
When the cloud is scatter... [read poem]
lines: the cold earth slept below
The cold earth slept below;
Above the cold sky shone;
And all around,... [read poem]
england in 1819
An old, mad, blind, despis'd, and dying king,
Princes, the dregs of their dull race, who flow... [read poem]
archy's song from charles i (a widow bird sate mourning)
Heigho! the lark and the owl!
One flies the morning, and one lulls the night:
Only t... [read poem]
julian and maddalo
I rode one evening with Count Maddalo
Upon the bank of land which breaks the flow
Of Adria... [read poem]
lines written among the euganean hills
Many a green isle needs must be
In the deep wide sea of Misery,
Or the mariner, worn and w... [read poem]
the fitful alternations of the rain
The fitful alternations of the rain,
When the chill wind, languid as with pain
Of its own ... [read poem]
Unfathomable Sea! whose waves are years,
Ocean of Time, whose waters of deep woe
Are b... [read poem]
alastor; or, the spirit of solitude
Nondum amabam, et amare amabam, quaerebam quid amarem, amans amare.--
Confess. S... [read poem]
music when soft voices die (to --)
Music, when soft voices die,
Vibrates in the memory--
Odours, when sweet violets sicken,... [read poem]

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