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Reading sad poems can be excruciating… yet rewarding!

Posted in Category: Poetry
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Poetry comes wrapped in various colours, emotions, wisdom and variety. You can read poems that suit your mood. Sometimes, it may be to cheer you up and other times, it might help you process pain, suffering and loss. At times, it is just there to help you in realising the only truth. In short, poems may be your companion if you want to make them so. In this article, I will try to argue in favour of sad poetry. And my opinion is that reading sad poems can bring solace, at times. If not solace, you can certainly get a respite in the verse and lure of lyrics. Let’s begin the arguments.

Reading sad poems can be a good way to explore and process emotions, especially if you feel comfortable doing so. Yes, right from the beginning, it is about your preference, choice and comfort. Like a good friend, poetry can provide a way to express and understand difficult feelings, and can also be a source of comfort for those who are going through a tough time. Those who are into music of every kind will understand the argument pretty comfortably. When we are sad, sad songs might help us get out of the moment. Likewise, sad poems can also help us understand the shades of our emotions closely. Additionally, reading sad poetry can be a way to connect with others who have experienced similar emotions, and can help to validate and normalise those feelings. Yes, make sure you don’t overdose yourself with the sorrows and mist of these poems. Enjoy it as long as you feel like enjoying… poems by Sylvia Plath and T. S. Eliot are the top examples of the wonderful fusion of sadness and poetry!

I remember reading The Waste Land and The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock by T. S. Eliot. I also remember reading many poems that might be categorised as sad by John Donne. I have also read many from Emily Dickinson and Dylan Thomas. Most of the time, I also enjoy reading sad poems by Hindi poets. If you realise, sadness is more than just being sad. It can be a melancholy loneliness with oneself that brings out the best of you! Yes, and a few hidden gems like A Photograph by Shirley Toulson and After Apple Picking by Robert Frost are also amazing poems that can fit into our category.

For those who want to have a go, I have listed a few sad poems by well-known poets in English. You can read them and see if you have the same taste as many others have.

  • Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night, by Dylan Thomas
  • Because I Could Not Stop for Death, by Emily Dickinson
  • The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost
  • Funeral Blues, by W.H. Auden
  • The Waste Land, by T.S. Eliot
  • Annabel Lee, by Edgar Allan Poe
  • After Apple-Picking, by Robert Frost
  • The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, by T.S. Eliot
  • When I Have Fears, by John Keats
  • The Death of a Toad, by Richard Wilbur

These poems do not only offer a singular kind of sadness but rather explore a range of perspectives on death and loss and a variety of emotions related to these themes. Also, let me remind you that some of these poems may be more challenging to understand. They might demand empathy and a little help from outside to let you have the full meaning. In addition, these poems offer the opportunity to consider the deeper meaning and significance of these experiences. And I am sure you will enjoy reading these in your leisure. All the best!


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