Sara Teasdale - Poems by the Famous Poet - All Poetry

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Sara Teasdale

1884-1933  •  Ranked #48 in the top 500 poets

Sara Teasdale [1884-1933] was an American lyric poet. Some of her work anticipated modern feminist verse and the intimate, autobiographical style known as confessional poetry. A large number of Teasdale's poems deal with love and death. Many of the speakers in her lyrics are women who face the death or desertion of a loved one. They also face the fact of their own mortality with disillusionment, but not as cynics. Teasdale associated moral and spiritual beauty with the harmonies of the natural world.

Teasdale was born in St. Louis, Missouri. In addition to writing her own poetry, she edited an anthology of love lyrics by women called "The Answering Voice" (1917, rev. ed. 1928). She also edited "Rainbow Gold" (1922), a collection of poetry for young people. Her Collected Poems was published in 1937.
She wrote several volumes of delicate and highly personal lyrics, including "Helen of Troy and Other Poems" (1911), "Rivers to the Sea" (1915), "Flame and Shadow" (1920), and "Strange Victory" (1933). An extraordinarily sensitive, almost reclusive, woman, Teasdale ended her life by suicide at the age of 48.
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Advice To A Girl

No one worth possessing
Can be quite possessed;
Lay that on your heart,
My young angry dear;
This truth, this hard and precious stone,
Lay it on your hot cheek,
Let it hide your tear.
Hold it like a crystal
When you are alone
And gaze in the depths of the icy stone.
Long, look long and you will be blessed:
No one worth possessing
Can be quite possessed.
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564  
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There Will Come Soft Rains

There will come soft rains and the smell of the ground,
And swallows circling with their shimmering sound;

And frogs in the pools singing at night,
And wild plum trees in tremulous white;

Robins will wear their feathery fire,
Whistling their whims on a low fence-wire;

And not one will know of the war, not one
Will care at last when it is done.

Not one would mind, neither bird nor tree,
If mankind perished utterly;

And Spring herself, when she woke at dawn
Would scarcely know that we were gone.
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49  

The Long Hill

I must have passed the crest a while ago
And now I am going down—
Strange to have crossed the crest and not to know,
But the brambles were always grabbing at the hem of my gown.

All the morning I thought how proud I should be
To stand there straight as a queen,
Wrapped in the wind and the sun with the world under me—
But the air was dull, there was little I could have seen.

It was nearly level along the beaten track
And the brambles caught in my gown—
But it's no use now to think of turning back,
The rest of the way will be only going down.
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7  
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