i have always liked Allen Ginsberg. because his poetry always seems to weave in and out of focus, to me. Langston Hughes, arguably America's greatest poet of the 20th century. certainly the greatest poet to come out of the harlem renaissance. Jayne Cortez (formerly Mrs. Ornette Coleman) is a great, gritty, earthy, grab you by the throat and shake you kind of poet. i love the poetry of Dianne Di Prima. She was one of the few female beat poets. as time went by, her poetry only got better, and if you can find a "collected" works volume by Di Prima you really can get a sense of how she and her poetry evolved. there's a whole lot of others that i'm leaving out.
I love Keats, I'm quite a fan of romantic poetry and I love his work. He writes with such elegance, such ethereal beauty, it's so emotionally charged.
I don't know how anyone could read Ode to Autumn and not fall in love with it, it's beautiful, decadent poetry, a luxury to read it. I love all of his work, but this is possibly one of my favourites, I love the season and so this poem beautifully depicts all aspects of Autumn for me:
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness!
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the mossed cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'erbrimmed their clammy cells.
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reaped furrow sound asleep,
Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers;
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours.
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too, -
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing, and now with treble soft
The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.
Though I am quite a fan of John Montague. Here is his poem, "All Legendary Obstacles":
All legendary obstacles lay between
Us, the long imaginary plain,
The monstrous ruck of mountains
And, swinging across the night,
Flooding the Sacramento, San Joaquin,
The hissing drift of winter rain.
All day I waited, shifting
Nervously from station to bar
As I saw another train sail
By, the San Francisco Chief or
Golden Gate, water dripping
From great flanged wheels.
At midnight you came, pale
Above the negro porter's lamp.
I was too blind with rain
And doubt to speak, but
Reached from the platform
Until our chilled hands met.
You had been travelling for days
With an old lady, who marked
A neat circle on the glass
With her glove, to watch us
Move into the wet darkness
Kissing, still unable to speak.
John Keats, William Wordsworth, Carl Sandburg, Seamus Heaney, to name a few.
Poetry is something that I have lost touch with over the past few years. I would really like to get back into it, in a way that ignores all the postmodern rubbish that seems to be coughed up constantly in our current creative climate.