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There are so many wonderful poems to choose from it is difficult to know where to make a start! We have therefore devised a Top 20 List of our favourite poems. It was an extremely difficult task and obviously our choice, in the end, was based on personal preferences! We hope that the list will provide our readers with as much pleasure that these famous verses have given to us. A good knowledge of these famous verses will provide all students and children with a good grounding of the subject. Each poet has a different style of writing making expert use of the English language. We have been asked on many occasions which is our favourite poem. Impossible! Writing styles, subject matter and even childhood memories influence choices, so we gave up and endeavoured to, at least, compile a list of our top twenty famous and favourite poems! The first line of the famous verse has been included to jog the memory! Please refer to the Index for the Top 20 list! We can, however give examples of some lovely verses from a selection of the most popular poems:
Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date.
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimmed;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance, or nature's changing course untrimmed.
But thy eternal summer shall not fade
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st;
Nor shall death brag thou wand'rest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow'st,
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.
William Shakespeare Sonnet 18
On either side the river lie
Long fields of barley and of rye,
That clothe the wold and meet the sky;
And thro' the field the road runs by
To many-tower'd Camelot;
And up and down the people go,
Gazing where the lilies blow
Round an island there below,
The island of Shallot.
The Lady of Shallot by Alfred Lord Tennyson
Morning and evening
Maids heard the goblins cry:
"Come buy our orchard fruits,
Come buy, come buy:
Apples and quinces,
Lemons and oranges,
Plump unpeck'd cherries,
Melons and raspberries,
Wild free-born cranberries,
Apricots, strawberries; -
All ripe together
In summer weather...
Goblin Market by Christina Rosetti