Sestina Poems

Popular Sestina Poems
Sestina: Altaforte
by Ezra Pound

Loquitur: En Bertrans de Born.
Dante Alighieri put this man in hell for that he was a
stirrer-up of strife.
Eccovi!
Judge ye!
Have I dug him up again?
The scene in at his castle, Altaforte. "Papiols" is his jongleur.
"The Leopard," the device of Richard (Cúur de Lion).

I

......

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Sestina
by Algernon Charl Swinburne

I saw my soul at rest upon a day
As a bird sleeping in the nest of night,
Among soft leaves that give the starlight way
To touch its wings but not its eyes with light;
So that it knew as one in visions may,
And knew not as men waking, of delight.
This was the measure of my soul's delight;
It had no power of joy to fly by day,
Nor part in the large lordship of the light;
But in a secret moon-beholden way

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Sestina
by Elizabeth Bishop

September rain falls on the house.
In the failing light, the old grandmother
sits in the kitchen with the child
beside the Little Marvel Stove,
reading the jokes from the almanac,
laughing and talking to hide her tears.

She thinks that her equinoctial tears
and the rain that beats on the roof of the house
were both foretold by the almanac,

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Six Words
by Lloyd Schwartz

yes
no
maybe
sometimes
always
never
Never?
Yes.
Always?
No.

......

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The Complaint Of Lisa
by Algernon Charl Swinburne

There is no woman living who draws breath
So sad as I, though all things sadden her.
There is not one upon life's weariest way
Who is weary as I am weary of all but death.
Toward whom I look as looks the sunflower
All day with all his whole soul toward the sun;
While in the sun's sight I make moan all day,
And all night on my sleepless maiden bed.
Weep and call out on death, O Love, and thee,
That thou or he would take me to the dead.

......

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Recent Sestina Poems
Sestina with Six Random Words
by Alexander Wolff

I was bragging to my friend Hadleigh that I slept with a model
named Jesse. As I drove back home, the insurance
company called, telling me I was an uninsured motorist.
It didn’t surprise me, for I had pledged
to stop using insurance, believing it a scam designed
by Sam. Although, this was only the first in the series

of events that night. It was late October — the start of the World Series.
On the radio, Hendrick’s Autos flaunted their makes and models.
Dusk danced across the sky, decaying, as if it were a prismatic design

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Sestina: Altaforte
by Ezra Pound

Loquitur: En Bertrans de Born.
Dante Alighieri put this man in hell for that he was a
stirrer-up of strife.
Eccovi!
Judge ye!
Have I dug him up again?
The scene in at his castle, Altaforte. "Papiols" is his jongleur.
"The Leopard," the device of Richard (Cúur de Lion).

I

......

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Six Words
by Lloyd Schwartz

yes
no
maybe
sometimes
always
never
Never?
Yes.
Always?
No.

......

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Sestina Of The Tramp-Royal
by Rudyard Kipling

Speakin' in general, I 'ave tried 'em all,
The 'appy roads that take you o'er the world.
Speakin' in general, I 'ave found them good
For such as cannot use one bed too long,
But must get 'ence, the same as I 'ave done,
An' go observin' matters till they die.

What do it matter where or 'ow we die,
So long as we've our 'ealth to watch it all --
The different ways that different things are done,

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The Complaint Of Lisa
by Algernon Charl Swinburne

There is no woman living who draws breath
So sad as I, though all things sadden her.
There is not one upon life's weariest way
Who is weary as I am weary of all but death.
Toward whom I look as looks the sunflower
All day with all his whole soul toward the sun;
While in the sun's sight I make moan all day,
And all night on my sleepless maiden bed.
Weep and call out on death, O Love, and thee,
That thou or he would take me to the dead.

......

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