The First Poems of Famous Writers

Repost alert! If you’ve been following this blog since April 8th, 2013, skip this post. If you’re a more recent reader, here’s a great throwback to a past post I wrote about the first poems of famous writers. Everyone starts someplace when they write, right?

Below are some of our favorite writers and their very first poems ever written. What do you think? Which are your favorite? Can you see where their style started from? Do these poems inspire you? Let us know in the comments below!

William Shakespeare

“Untitled” (1582) (1 year before he had a poem published)

Those lips that Love’s own hand did make
Breath’d forth the sound that said I hate
To me that languish’d for her sake:
But when she saw my woeful state,
Straight in her heart did mercy come.
Chiding that tongue, that ever sweet
Was used in giving gentle doom:
And taught it thus anew to greet:
‘I hate’ she alter’d with an end
That follow’d it as gentle day
Doth follow night, who like a fiend
From heaven to hell is flown away.
‘I hate’ from hate away she threw,
And sav’d my life, saying ‘not you’

e.e. cummings

“My First Poem” (1897) (Age 3)

Oh little birdie
oh
oh
oh,

With your
toe
toe
toe.

Sylvia Plath

“Poem” (1941) (Published when she was 8 years old)

Hear the crickets chirping
In the dewy grass.
Bright little fireflies
Twinkle as they pass.

Edgar Allan Poe

“Untitled” (1824) (At the age of 15)

Last night, with many cares & toils oppress’d
Weary, I laid me on a couch to rest —

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About ThePandaBard

Amanda is the Managing Editor at The Poetics Project and of The Socialist, the national magazine of The Socialist Party USA. She graduated with a BA in English Education and a minor in Political Science. She is currently enrolled in an English MA program with an emphasis in Literature. During her free time, Amanda enjoys writing poetry, reading, traveling, crocheting, watching entire seasons of campy shows on Netflix, and, of course, writing blogs. You can follow Amanda on Twitter @ThePandaBard, on Pinterest @ThePandaBard, or on Medium @ThePandaBard. You can also find her research on Academia.Edu at Cpp.Academia.Edu/MandaRiggle.
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