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Poems About Being Alone

Table of Contents

  1. Alone by James Russell Lowell
  2. Alone by Sara Teasdale
  3. Alone by Edgar Allan Poe
  4. Alone by Ruby Archer
  5. All Alone by Mary E. Tucker
  6. I Like to Wander Off Alone by Annette Wynne
  7. The Sea of Silence by Florence May Alt
  8. I Am Lonely by George Eliot
  9. The Lonely Lion by Amos Russel Wells
  10. Solitude by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  11. Ode on Solitude by Alexander Pope
  12. The Solitude of Alexander Selkirk by Alexander Selkirk by William Cowper
  13. The Old Sheep Wagon by Arthur Chapman
  14. Tired by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  15. December by Thomas Bailey Aldrich
  16. Love Was True to Me by John Boyle O'Reilly

  1. Alone

    by James Russell Lowell

    From the close-shut windows gleams no spark,
    The night is chilly, the night is dark,
    The poplars shiver, the pine-trees moan,
    My hair by the autumn breeze is blown,
    Under thy window I sing alone,
    Alone, alone, ah woe! alone!

    The darkness is pressing coldly around,
    The windows shake with a lonely sound,
    The stars are hid and the night is drear,
    The heart of silence throbs in thine ear,
    In thy chamber thou sittest alone,
    Alone, alone, ah woe! alone!

    The world is happy, the world is wide.
    Kind hearts are beating on every side;
    Ah, why should we lie so coldly curled
    Alone in the shell of this great world?
    Why should we any more be alone?
    Alone, alone, ah woe! alone!

    Oh, 'tis a bitter and dreary word,
    The saddest by man's ear ever heard!
    We each are young, we each have a heart,
    Why stand we ever coldly apart?
    Must we forever, then, be alone?
    Alone, alone, ah woe! alone!

  2. Alone

    by Sara Teasdale

    I am alone, in spite of love,
    In spite of all I take and give—
    In spite of all your tenderness,
    Sometimes I am not glad to live.

    I am alone, as though I stood
    On the highest peak of the tired gray world,
    About me only swirling snow,
    Above me, endless space unfurled;

    With earth hidden and heaven hidden,
    And only my own spirit's pride
    To keep me from the peace of those
    Who are not lonely, having died.

  3. "Alone"

    by Edgar Allan Poe

    From childhood’s hour I have not been
    As others were—I have not seen
    As others saw—I could not bring
    My passions from a common spring—
    From the same source I have not taken
    My sorrow—I could not awaken
    My heart to joy at the same tone—
    And all I lov’d—I lov’d alone—
    Then—in my childhood—in the dawn
    Of a most stormy life—was drawn
    From ev’ry depth of good and ill
    The mystery which binds me still—
    From the torrent, or the fountain—
    From the red cliff of the mountain—
    From the sun that ’round me roll’d
    In its autumn tint of gold—
    From the lightning in the sky
    As it pass’d me flying by—
    From the thunder, and the storm—
    And the cloud that took the form
    (When the rest of Heaven was blue)
    Of a demon in my view—

  4. Alone

    by Ruby Archer

    For me the day is done,
    Though high the ardent sun;
    I feel the twilight gray.
    For you, my Love, are gone,
    My Sunlight and my Dawn,
    My Noon and all my Day.

  5. All Alone

    by Mary Eliza Perine Tucker

    And shall we ever seek in vain,
    In this cold world of ours,
    The love of kindred heart to gain
    To rouse our latent powers?
    Or shall our hearts forever mourn
    All alone?

    Upon the silvery moon I gaze
    And the bright gems of night;
    And from their loving, tender rays,
    My soul imbibes God's light.
    Why to me is that radiance borne
    All alone?

    I feel each gentle, soothing word—
    The perfume of the flower—
    The thrilling music of the bird—
    The twilight's quiet hour:
    And sigh to think these joys mine own,
    All alone.

    Once in my early youth I thought
    That answered was my prayer;
    Alas! experience soon taught
    'Twas but a dream so fair:
    In heaven, blest heaven, I shall not mourn
    All alone!

  6. I Like to Wander Off Alone

    by Annette Wynne

    I like to wander off alone
    And climb upon a great tall stone,
    And wonder.

    I like to wonder at the sky,
    The curly cloud that tumbles by;
    I like to wonder at the grass
    And all the flying things that pass,
    I wonder if they wonder, too,
    The little things—perhaps they do,
    Perhaps they wonder who am I
    To stare at them as they pass by;

    The curly cloud looks down at me
    And wonders, too, what I may be,
    A tiny spot, so very small,
    The cloud can hardly see at all;
    And all the world is wondering
    At every other wondering thing,
    There's so much wondering to do,
    I wonder if I could get through;
    I think perhaps I might some day
    If I should never stop for play—
    I wonder!

  7. The Sea of Silence

    by Florence May Alt

    When between us two there rolled
    Wide Atlantic's sea,
    Ships too frail thy love to hold
    Brought thy words to me.
    Though thy letters few and far
    Crost a burning zone,
    Yet thy love rose like a star—
    I was not alone.

    When the white sails westward flew,
    "What are seas?" I cried;
    "What but ribbons broad and blue,
    That the gods have tied."
    Though across Pacific's sea,
    Drifted wrecks were blown,
    Still thy letters came to me—
    I was not alone.

    But today we met—behold,
    In the narrow street;
    And the Sea of Silence rolled
    To our ver feet.
    Not a smile to cross the space,
    Not a tender tone;
    I, while looking in thy face,
    Knew I was alone.

  8. "I Am Lonely"

    by George Eliot

    The world is great: the birds all fly from me,
    The stars are golden fruit upon a tree
    All out of reach: my little sister went,
    And I am lonely.

    The world is great: I tried to mount the hill
    Above the pines, where the light lies so still,
    But it rose higher: little Lisa went
    And I am lonely.

    The world is great: the wind comes rushing by.
    I wonder where it comes from; sea birds cry
    And hurt my heart: my little sister went,
    And I am lonely.

    The world is great: the people laugh and talk,
    And make loud holiday: how fast they walk!
    I'm lame, they push me: little Lisa went,
    And I am lonely.

  9. The Lonely Lion

    by Amos Russel Wells

    The lion was lonely;
    Said he, "There is only
    One way of driving this gloom from me:
    I must enter into society!"
    So he asked the beasts in a manner quite hearty,
    To come to his cave for a little party.
    On the appointed day,
    In a frightened way,
    A parrot flew over his head to say
    That the beasts would be happy the lion to greet,
    But they very much feared he was out of meat!
    "Alas!" the lion cried with a groan,
    And must I then live forever alone?"

  10. Solitude

    by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

    Laugh, and the world laughs with you,
    Weep, and you weep alone;
    For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth,
    But has trouble enough of its own.

    Sing, and the hills will answer,
    Sigh, it is lost on the air;
    The echoes bound to a joyful sound,
    But shirk from voicing care.

    Rejoice and men will seek you;
    Grieve, and they turn and go;
    They want full measure of all your pleasure,
    But they do not need your woe.

    Be glad, and your friends are many;
    Be sad, and you lose them all,
    There are none to decline your nectar'd wine,
    But alone you must drink life's gall.

    Feast, and your halls are crowded;
    Fast, and the world goes by;
    Succeed and give, and it helps you live,
    But no man can help you die.

    There is room in the halls of pleasure
    For a large and lordly train,
    But one by one we must all file on
    Through the narrow aisle of pain.

    Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

    – Galations 6:2
    The Bible, NIV
  11. Ode on Solitude

    by Alexander Pope

    Happy the man, whose wish and care
    A few paternal acres bound,
    Content to breathe his native air,
    In his own ground.

    Whose herds with milk, whose fields with bread,
    Whose flocks supply him with attire,
    Whose trees in summer yield him shade,
    In winter fire.

    Blest, who can unconcernedly find
    Hours, days, and years slide soft away,
    In health of body, peace of mind,
    Quiet by day,

    Sound sleep by night; study and ease,
    Together mixed; sweet recreation;
    And innocence, which most does please,
    With meditation.

    Thus let me live, unseen, unknown;
    Thus unlamented let me die;
    Steal from the world, and not a stone
    Tell where I lie.

  12. The Solitude of Alexander Selkirk

    by William Cowper

    I am monarch of all I survey;
    My right there is none to dispute;
    From the centre all round to the sea
    I am lord of the fowl and the brute.
    O Solitude! where are the charms
    That sages have seen in thy face?
    Better dwell in the midst of alarms,
    Than reign in this horrible place.

    I am out of humanity’s reach,
    I must finish my journey alone,
    Never hear the sweet music of speech;
    I start at the sound of my own.
    The beasts that roam over the plain
    My form with indifference see;
    They are so unacquainted with man,
    Their tameness is shocking to me.

    Society, Friendship, and Love
    Divinely bestow’d upon man,
    O, had I the wings of a dove
    How soon would I taste you again!
    My sorrows I then might assuage
    In the ways of religion and truth;
    Might learn from the wisdom of age,
    And be cheer’d by the sallies of youth.

    Ye winds that have made me your sport,
    Convey to this desolate shore
    Some cordial endearing report
    Of a land I shall visit no more:
    My friends, do they now and then send
    A wish or a thought after me?
    O tell me I yet have a friend,
    Though a friend I am never to see.

    How fleet is a glance of the mind!
    Compared with the speed of its flight,
    The tempest itself lags behind,
    And the swift-wingèd arrows of light.
    When I think of my own native land
    In a moment I seem to be there;
    But alas! recollection at hand
    Soon hurries me back to despair.

    But the sea-fowl is gone to her nest,
    The beast is laid down in his lair;
    Even here is a season of rest,
    And I to my cabin repair.
    There’s mercy in every place,
    And mercy, encouraging thought!
    Gives even affliction a grace
    And reconciles man to his lot.

  13. The Old Sheep Wagon

    Arthur Chapman

    I have heard men long for a palace, but I want no such abode,
    For wealth is a source of trouble, and a jeweled crown is a load;
    I'll take my home in the open, with a mixture of sun and rain—
    Just give me my old sheep wagon, on the boundless Wyoming plain.

    With the calling sheep around me, and my collie's head on my knees,
    I float my cigarette smoke on the sage-scented prairie breeze;
    And at night, when the band is bedded, I creep, like a tired child,
    To my tarp, in the friendly wagon, alone on the sheep range wild.

    Music and art I am missing?—but what great symphony
    Can equal the harps of nature that are twanged by the plains-wind free?
    And where is the master of color to match, though for years he tried,
    The purples that veil yon mesa, at the hour of eventide?

    I have had my fill of mankind, and my dog is my only friend,
    So I'm waiting, here in the sagebrush, for the judgment the Lord may send;
    They'll find me dead in my wagon, out here on the hilltops brown,
    But I reckon I'11 die as easy as I would in a bed in town!

  14. Tired

    by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

    I am tired tonight, and something,
    The wind maybe, or the rain,
    Or the cry of a bird in the copse outside,
    Has brought back the past, and its pain.
    And I feel, as I sit here thinking,
    That the hand of a dead old June
    Has reached out hold of my heart's loose strings,
    And is drawing them up in tune.

    I am tired tonight, and I miss you,
    And long for you, love, through tears;
    And it seems but today that I saw you go—
    You, who have been gone for years.
    And I seem to be newly lonely—
    I, who am so much alone;
    And the strings of my heart are well in tune,
    But they have not the same old tone.

    I am tired; and that old sorrow
    Sweeps down the bed of my soul,
    As a turbulent river might suddenly break
    Away from a dam's control.
    It beareth a wreck on its bosom,
    A wreck with a snow-white sail,
    And the hand on my heart-strings thrums away,
    But they only respond with a wail.

  15. December

    by Thomas Bailey Aldrich

    Only the sea intoning,
    Only the wainscot-mouse,
    Only the wild wind moaning
    Over the lonely house.

    Darkest of all Decembers
    Ever my life has known,
    Sitting here by the embers,
    Stunned and helpless, alone—

    Dreaming of two graves lying
    Out in the damp and chill:
    One where the buzzard, flying,
    Pauses at Malvern Hill;

    The other—alas! the pillows
    Of that uneasy bed
    Rise and fall with the billows
    Over our sailor's head.

    Theirs the heroic story —
    Died, by frigate and town!
    Theirs the Calm and the Glory,
    Theirs the Cross and the Crown.

    Mine to linger and languish
    Here by the wintry sea.
    Ah, faint heart! in thy anguish,
    What is there left to thee?

    Only the sea intoning,
    Only the wainscot-mouse,
    Only the wild wind moaning
    Over the lonely house.

  16. Love Was True to Me

    John Boyle O'Reilly

    Love was true to me,
    True and tender;
    I who ought to be
    Love’s defender,
    Let the cold winds blow
    Till they chilled him;
    Let the winds and snow
    Shroud him—and I know
    That I killed him.

    Years he cried to me
    To be kinder;
    I was blind to see
    And grew blinder.
    Years with soft hands raised
    Fondly reaching,
    Wept and prayed and praised,
    Still beseeching.

    When he died I woke,
    God! how lonely,
    When the gray dawn broke
    On one only.
    Now beside Love’s grave
    I am kneeling;
    All he sought and gave
    I am feeling.

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