Who are your favorite poets? From the past or the present

I know this is a hard question to answer, but I think it would be interesting to see everyone’s different opinions.

Do you want to know my favorite poets? I’m not sure–you kind of put me on the spot–but I’ll try to answer your question. I guess I like Langston Hughes for his rhythm. I like Raymond Carver because of his simple language.

Anyway, who are your favorite poets?



5 Replies to “Who are your favorite poets? From the past or the present”

  1. I keep trying to not say Yeats, but I think I like him also because he’s pretty badass, moral statements aside. Also his poems are so tight. I don’t always agree with him, but man do I feel what he means. Right before WWII (1939), he writes “Politics,” perhaps his very last poem:

    How can I, that girl standing there,
    My attention fix
    On Roman or on Russian
    Or on Spanish politics,
    Yet here’s a travelled man that knows
    What he talks about,
    And there’s a politician
    That has both read and thought,
    And maybe what they say is true
    Of war and war’s alarms,
    But O that I were young again
    And held her in my arms.

  2. Ok so I don’t know if I’m allowed to say Bob Dylan…but his lyrics are some of the most beautiful poems I have ever heard. Many of his songs have inspired me so much to write my own poetry. Particularly the song “Hurricane”, which is such a beautiful political poem. Also, he wrote “Subterranean Homesick Blues” and if that’s not the coolest poem you’ve ever heard then you are C R A Z Y.

    Also, i have such a soft spot for Ginsberg…even though sometimes he’s a bit too much for me. However, his cinematic writing style may have been what initially dragged me into poetry.

    1. “Lights flicker from the opposite to loft
      in this room the heat pipes just cough
      the country music plays soft
      but there’s nothing really nothing to turn off”
      –always loved that part of Visions of Johanna

  3. I know it’s super problematic that if someone asks you to name a queer spoken word poet, 99% of people our age will say Andrea Gibson. But I spent so many middle school nights listening to and memorizing her poems that she will always be on this list for me. Next to her is singer/songwriter Joe Stevens, here is part of the song Laramie written by him and his ex-girlfriend Ingrid:

    “Ten years ago it was, blood froze over the old sea
    October never was so cold for a boy down in Laramie
    Oh, thunderstorms of outrage raining tears cross the land
    Seems we had to watch a white boy die to finally make a stand

    Apple of his mama’s eye, boy smile and proudly dance away
    The light of his beautiful life eclipsed too soon on this day
    Oh, they tied him to a split-rail fence and left him there to die
    Lonely as a scarecrow set against the morning sky

    Ten years ago it was, and no one will ever forget his name
    Or the gospel of the shepard boy, the living truth that we are all the same
    Oh, he sure was not the first one, and he hasn’t been the last
    Ask yourself has much has changed since those ten years have passed

    Would you give your life to be
    Something beautiful and free
    It could’ve been you, it could’ve been me… in Laramie”

    I also love Libby Olga Howard (I think they might be going by Mud now, but I’m not sure). This is the beginning of my favorite poem of theirs (Mo Ni Fe, which means “I love you” in Yoruba).

    “The word Hinduism did not exist until 29,000 years after the religion was born.
    This means the faith that millions of people poured into themselves for centuries did not have a name.
    It makes me wonder
    if the faith I have in us
    will remain nameless until we extinguish”

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