The christmas month of December is a wonderful invitation for reflection, spending time with your loved ones and for shopping carefully selected christmas gifts. Christmas is also a wonderful opportunity to sit down on a quiet Sunday morning, reading your favourite poems.
I found a few that I find quite lovely for this time of year, bearing in mind that very soon, we will be facing not only christmas eve and the ultimate celebration of love, relationship and family, but also a new year which often brings a new perspective on things.
1/ Walt Whitman: Leaves of Grass, 1855
Walt Whitman’s self-published Leaves of Grass is perceived as one of the greatest American poetry books ever published. Not only were the poetry at the time not reputable, but is was too very exuberant and frank, which may have come as an surprise to the American people. Although this was the case at the time, it was not long after his death that people realised what his poetry had contributed with in terms of their national understanding.
2/ Robert Frost, Mountain Interval Collection, 1920
If you are not familiar with the poem The Road not Taken by Robert Frost, you better read it ASAP! This is one of the poems I remember the most from elementary school and it has almost printed itself in my retinal. The Road not Taken is a part of the Mountain Interval Collection and was the first poem in the series to be published in 1920. Imagine standing in front of a crossroad and then read this beautiful poem. You will love it!
3/ Wendy Cope, Family Values, 2011
Wendy Cope is an English contemporary poet, who delivers a wide range of topics in her sixth collection of poems. She touches topics like family, childhood, love and ageing. Her poetry is filled with humour and is compassion, something we are hungry for in these days of media filled with violence, world catastrophes and terrorism. I especially like the poems regarding love and ageing as she write so light and beautiful which makes your mind wander.
4/ George Gordon Lord Byron, Don Juan, 1818 – 1824
One of the greatest English poets, Lord Byron, mastered the romance to perfection with his great love poems. But what you don’t always notice about Lord Byron is, that in fact he was quite witty. Don Juan is divided into cantos and was published separately between 1818 and 1824, the year he died. Don Juan is based upon the legend of Don Juan, but Byron portrays Don Juan as someone who is easily seduced by women and not as the womaniser the legend says, he was.
Snuggle up in your favourite armchair, find a warm blanket and cosy up with a cup of warming christmassy tea and you will be good to go for some poetry reading.