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Poems About the Moon

Table of Contents

  1. The Moon by Emily Dickinson
  2. Moonrise by Bliss Carman
  3. The Moon and I by Annette Wynne
  4. Broadway Moon by Luella Stewart
  5. To the Moon Beams by Hannah Flagg Gould
  6. Moonrise at Sea by Thomas Bailey Aldrich
  7. Golden Moonrise by William Stanley Braithwaite
  8. The New Moon by William Cullen Bryant
  9. The Moon Upon the Spire by Hannah Flagg Gould
  10. Each that we lose takes part of us by Emily Dickinson
  11. The moon is distant from the sea by Emily Dickinson
  12. Sailing To-Night by Anonymous
  13. The Queen of Night by Bliss Carman
  14. Under the April Moon by Bliss Carman
  1. A Spy by John B. Tabb
  2. Moonlight by John Jay Chapman
  3. Trapped by Adelaide Crapsey
  4. The New Moon by Sara Teasdale
  5. The Young Setting Moon by Hannah Flagg Gould
  6. Moonlight by Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts
  7. The Harvest Moon by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  8. To The Moon Rising Above The Waters by Eliza and Sarah Wolcott
  9. Moonlight by William Shakespeare
  10. The Moon by Eliza Lee Fallen
  11. "Moon, So Round and Yellow" by Matthias Barr
  12. The Moon-Sheep by Christopher Morley
  13. The Hunter's Moon by Mathilde Blind
  14. Moonrise by Grace Hazard Conkling
  15. The Rainy Moon by Grace Hazard Conkling
  16. Crescent Moon by Elizabeth Madox Roberts

  1. The Moon

    by Emily Dickinson

    The moon was but a chin of gold
    A night or two ago,
    And now she turns her perfect face
    Upon the world below.

    Her forehead is of amplest blond;
    Her cheek like beryl stone;
    Her eye unto the summer dew
    The likest I have known.

    Her lips of amber never part;
    But what must be the smile
    Upon her friend she could bestow
    Were such her silver will!

    And what a privilege to be
    But the remotest star!
    For certainly her way might pass
    Beside your twinkling door.

    Her bonnet is the firmament,
    The universe her shoe,
    The stars the trinkets at her belt,
    Her dimities of blue.

  2. Moonrise

    by Bliss Carman

    At the end of the road through the wood
    I see the great moon rise.
    The fields are flooded with shine,
    And my soul with surmise.

    What if that mystic orb
    With her shadowy beams,
    Should be the revealer at last
    Of my darkest dreams!

    What if this tender fire
    In my heart's deep hold
    Should be wiser than all the lore
    Of the sages of old!

  3. The Moon and I

    by Annette Wynne

    We played a game—the moon and I,
    The moon was laughing in the sky,
    I spied her, too, and called aloud,
    But still she hid behind a cloud.

  4. Broadway Moon

    by Luella Stewart

    The moon was misty last night—
    It hung in the sombre sky
    Like a wistful wondering eye
    Or a sad wraith that slips from sight.

    But the lights on the Joyous Way
    Shone brighter than moon or star,
    High up where the Mint Men are
    And the Kitten and Spool at play!

    And so, if you wept, old Moon,
    If grief was your mantle gray,
    Why, what is the moon to Broadway?
    (A rhyme for a jazz-time tune—
    June, croon, spoon, soon!)—
    And what is Broadway—to the Moon?

  5. To the Moon Beams

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    Away, away, from her favorite bower,
    Where ye loved to come in the evening hour,
    To silver the leaf, to smile on the flower,
    And checker the scene so playfully!
    Away, away! for the maid ye seek
    Hath a darkened eye, and a pale, pale cheek!
    As the lonely walk and the flowers all speak,
    While they hang their heads so mournfully!

    Away! for the voice ye used to win,
    With its soft, rich melody formed within,
    Is hushed—'t is gone, as it never had been
    Poured out so sweet and feelingly!
    And the fearful harp, that ye could make
    Its deepest and tenderest notes awake,
    Now hath not a string but it fain would break,
    They lie so lorn and listlessly!

    Away, to the slope of the dew-bright hill;
    Where the sod is fresh, and the air is chill;
    Where the marble is white, and all is still,
    O'er beauty sleeping peacefully!
    But never reveal who there is led
    By your light to weep o'er her lowly bed,
    That a spirit so pure from the earth hath fled,
    And to sigh for her loss unceasingly!

  6. Moonrise at Sea

    by Thomas Bailey Aldrich

    Up from the dark the moon begins to creep;
    And now a pallid, haggard face lifts she
    Above the water-line: thus from the deep
    A drownéd body rises solemnly.

  7. Golden Moonrise

    by William Stanley Braithwaite

    When your eyes gaze seaward
    Piercing through the dim
    Slow descending nightfall,
    On the outer rim

    Where the deep blue silence
    Touches sky and sea,
    Hast thou seen the golden
    Moon, rise silently?

    Seen the great battalions
    Of the stars grow pale —
    Melting in the magic
    Of her silver veil?

    I have seen the wonder,
    I have felt the balm
    Of the golden moonrise
    Turn to silver calm.

  8. The New Moon

    by William Cullen Bryant

    When, as the gairish day is done,
    Heaven burns with the descended sun,
    'Tis passing sweet to mark,
    Amid that flush of crimson light,
    The new moon's modest bow grow bright,
    As earth and sky grow dark.

    Few are the hearts too cold to feel
    A thrill of gladness o'er them steal,
    When first the wandering eye
    Sees faintly, in the evening blaze,
    That glimmering curve of tender rays
    Just planted in the sky.

    The sight of that young crescent brings
    Thoughts of all fair and youthful things—
    The hopes of early years;
    And childhood's purity and grace,
    And joys that like a rainbow chase
    The passing shower of tears.

    The captive yields him to the dream
    Of freedom, when that virgin beam
    Comes out upon the air;
    And painfully the sick man tries
    To fix his dim and burning eyes
    On the soft promise there.

    Most welcome to the lover's sight,
    Glitters that pure, emerging light;
    For prattling poets say,
    That sweetest is the lovers' walk,
    And tenderest is their murmured talk,
    Beneath its gentle ray.

    And there do graver men behold
    A type of errors, loved of old,
    Forsaken and forgiven;
    And thoughts and wishes not of earth,
    Just opening in their early birth,
    Like that new light in heaven.

  9. The Moon Upon the Spire

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    The full-orbed moon has reached no higher,
    Than yon old church's mossy spire;
    And seems, as gliding up the air,
    She saw the lane; and, pausing there,
    Would worship, in the tranquil night,
    The Prince of peace—the Source of light,
    Where man for God prepared the place,
    And God to man unveils his face.

    Her tribute all around is seen,
    She bends, and worships like a queen!
    Her robe of light and beaming crown,
    In silence, she is casting down;
    And, as a creature of the earth,
    She feels her lowliness of birth—
    Her weakness and inconstancy
    Before unchanging purity!

    Pale traveller, on thy lonely way,
    'T is well thine homage thus to pay;
    To reverence that ancient pile,
    And spread thy silver o'er the aisle,
    Which many a pious foot has trod,
    That now is dust beneath the sod;
    Where many a sacred tear was wept,
    From eyes that long in death have slept!

    The temple's builders—where are they?
    The worshippers?—all passed away,
    Who came the first, to offer there
    The song of praise, the heart of prayer!
    Man's generation passes soon;
    It wanes and changes like the moon.
    He rears the perishable wall;
    But, ere it crumbles, he must fall!

    And does he sink to rise no more?
    Has he no part to triumph o'er
    The pallid king?—no spark, to save
    From darkness, ashes and the grave?
    Thou holy place, the answer, wrought
    In thy firm structure, bars the thought!
    The spirit that established thee,
    Nor death, nor darkness e'er shall see!

  10. Each that we lose takes part of us

    by Emily Dickinson

    Each that we lose takes part of us;
    A crescent still abides,
    Which like the moon, some turbid night,
    Is summoned by the tides.

  11. The moon is distant from the sea

    by Emily Dickinson

    The moon is distant from the sea,
    And yet with amber hands
    She leads him, docile as a boy,
    Along appointed sands.

    He never misses a degree;
    Obedient to her eye,
    He comes just so far toward the town,
    Just so far goes away.

    Oh, Signor, thine the amber hand,
    And mine the distant sea, —
    Obedient to the least command
    Thine eyes impose on me.

  12. Sailing To-Night

    by Anonymous

    There’s a ship on the sea. It is sailing to-night—
    Sailing to-night;—
    And father’s aboard, and the moon is all bright—
    Shining and bright.
    Dear Moon, he’ll be sailing for many a night—
    Sailing from mother and me;
    Oh, follow the ship with your silvery light,
    As father sails over the sea!

  13. The Queen of Night

    by Bliss Carman

    Mortal, mortal, have you seen
    In the scented summer night,
    Great Astarte, clad in green
    With a veil of mystic light,
    Passing on her silent way,
    Pale and lovelier than day?

    Mortal, mortal, have you heard,
    On an odorous summer eve,
    Rumors of an unknown word
    Bidding sorrow not to grieve,—
    Echoes of a silver voice
    Bidding every heart rejoice?

    Mortal, when the slim new moon
    Hangs above the western hill,
    When the year comes round to June
    And the leafy world is still,
    Then, enraptured, you shall hear
    Secrets for a poet's ear.

    Mortal, mortal, come with me,
    When the moon is rising large,
    Through the wood or from the sea,
    Or by some lone river marge.
    There, entranced, you shall behold
    Beauty's self, that grows not old.

  14. Under the April Moon

    by Bliss Carman

    Oh, well the world is dreaming
    Under the April moon,
    Her soul in love with beauty,
    Her senses all a-swoon!

    Pure hangs the silver crescent
    Above the twilight wood,
    And pure the silver music
    Wakes from the marshy flood.

    O Earth, with all thy transport,
    How comes it life should seem
    A shadow in the moonlight,
    A murmur in a dream?

  15. A Spy

    by John B. Tabb

    Sighed the languid Moon to the Morning Star:
    "O little maid, how late you are!"
    "I couldn't rise from my couch," quoth she,
    "While the Man-in-the-Moon was looking at me."

  16. Moonlight

    by John Jay Chapman

    I
    The evening air exhales a spicy scent,
    The robin warbles, and the thrush replies;
    And on the terrace a tall regiment
    Of lillies and of larkspur seem to rise
    In the last glow of the transparent skies,
    And shed a radiance hitherto unseen.
    Distant, and yet distinct, come joyous cries
    And twilight echoes, few and far between,—
    Children at play,—dogs barking,—fairies on the green.

    II
    The shadows deepen; in the bushy lanes
    The fireflies brighten and the crickets cheep:
    And hark, an owl! how dolorous the strains,
    At which the field-mouse to his bed doth creep.
    The birds, the trees, the flowers have dropped to sleep;
    The noises from the village float no more;
    Night doth enwrap the world in slumber deep.
    And while upon reposeful gloom we pore,
    Behold, a ghostly glow that was not there before!

    III
    Slowly, with laboring steps, doth she emerge:
    Like a stout shallop in the foaming seas
    She holds her prow against the fleecy surge,
    And steers between the cliffs of giant trees,
    Rounding the headlands, winning by degrees,
    Till she outpours the fulness of her beam,
    Unrolling all her silver treasuries
    On hamlet, plain, and mountain, farm and stream,
    With inky shadows that make light more glorious seem.

    IV
    Reason dissolves in moonlight; for the moon,
    Passing the porch of man's dilated eyes,
    Doth cast him straight into a kind of swoon:
    She, while the wretch in a delirium lies,
    Unveils her passions, longings, rhapsodies,—
    Shows him a crystal sea that floods the space
    Between the darkling earth and liquid skies;
    And bids him enter her cool resting-place
    That clasps the whole of nature in one bright embrace.

    V
    She would persuade him it is everywhere,
    Disguised beneath the blaze of Phœbus' ray,
    Alive in the illuminated air,
    Imprisoned in the glamour of the day,—
    Which by her art she weaves and shreds away,
    Using such magic that each blade of grass,
    Bush, mead and brake her potency betray,
    Yea, stand like sentinels to watch her pass,
    And toward her naked truth hold up earth's looking-glass.

    VI
    Alas, in vain she reasons; men reply
    That Phœbus gave her all the wealth she had,
    And clepe her sacred wisdom sorcery:
    Those who believe her are accounted mad.
    And therefore is her visage ever sad;
    And as she climbs she suffers, for she feels
    The arrows of the over-weening lad
    Falling in deadly showers at her heels.
    She fears the lightning of those ever-burning wheels.

    VII
    Yet in her flight she leaves her realm behind
    To poets and to lovers, whose wide eyes,
    Dilated by the moonlight of the mind,
    See every object in a mad disguise,—
    Within a tide between the earth and skies;
    And every common bank or brook or flower
    To their ecstatic questioning replies,
    Glows, throbs and moves with a mysterious power,—
    As in a moonlit garden at the trysting hour.

  17. Moon-Shadows

    by Adelaide Crapsey

    Still as
    On windless nights
    The moon-cast shadows are,
    So still will be my heart when I
    Am dead.

  18. The New Moon

    by Sara Teasdale

    Day, you have bruised and beaten me,
    As rain beats down the bright, proud sea,
    Beaten my body, bruised my soul,
    Left me nothing lovely or whole—
    Yet I have wrested a gift from you,
    Day that dies in dusky blue:

    For suddenly over the factories
    I saw a moon in the cloudy seas—
    A wisp of beauty all alone
    In a world as hard and gray as stone—
    Oh who could be bitter and want to die
    When a maiden moon wakes up in the sky?

  19. The Young Setting Moon

    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    The fair, young moon in a silver bow,
    Looks back from the bending west,
    Like a weary soul, that is glad to go
    To the long-sought place of rest.

    Her crescent lies in a beaming crown
    On the distant hill's dark head,
    Serene as the righteous looking down
    On the world, from his dying bed.

    Her rays, to our view, grow few and faint.
    Her light is at last withdrawn;
    And she, like the calmly departing saint,
    To her far-off home is gone.

    O! what could have made the moon so bright
    Till her work for the earth was done?
    'T was the glory drawn from a purer light—
    From the face of the radiant sun!

    For she on her absent king could look,
    Whom the world saw not the while;
    Her face from his all its beauty took—
    She conveyed to the world his smile.

    By him, through night has the moon been led
    'Mid the clouds that crossed the sky,
    While she drew her beams o'er the earth to shed,
    From the god where she fixed her eye.

    And thus does Faith 'mid her trials, view
    In the God to whom she clings
    A SUN, whose glories for ever new,
    Unfold in his healing wings.

    'T is He, who will guide our course aright
    Though grief overcloud the heart;
    And it is but faith being lost in sight
    When the good from the earth depart!

  20. Moonlight

    by Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts

    The fifers of these amethystine fields,
    Whose far fine sound the night makes musical,
    Now while thou wak'st and longing would'st recall
    Joys that no rapture of remembrance yields,
    Voice to thy soul, lone-sitting deep within
    The still recesses of thine ecstasy,
    My love and my desire, that fain would fly
    With this far-silvering moon and fold thee in.

    But not for us the touch, the clasp, the kiss,
    And for our restlessness no rest. In vain
    These aching lips, these hungering hearts that strain
    Toward the denied fruition of our bliss,
    Had love not learned of longing to devise
    Out of desire and dream our paradise,

  21. The Harvest Moon

    by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

    It is the Harvest Moon! On gilded vanes
    And roofs of villages, on woodland crests
    And their aerial neighborhoods of nests
    Deserted, on the curtained window-panes
    Of rooms where children sleep, on country lanes
    And harvest-fields, its mystic splendor rests!
    Gone are the birds that were our summer guests,
    With the last sheaves return the laboring wains!
    All things are symbols: the external shows
    Of Nature have their image in the mind,
    As flowers and fruits and falling of the leaves;
    The song-birds leave us at the summer's close,
    Only the empty nests are left behind,
    And pipings of the quail among the sheaves.

  22. To The Moon Rising Above The Waters

    by Eliza and Sarah Wolcott

    Fair orb of eve, I view thee o'er the sea,
    While the proud waters kiss the radiant beam;
    Full, independent in thy course, thou'rt free—
    Rising like virtue, pure, in high esteem.

    Thou'rt unconfin'd to seas, or distant flood,
    High o'er the wilderness, thy visit pay,
    Where never voice or human footsteps trod,—
    Impartial beams, o'er nature's gifts display.

    I love to see thee, in the evening gray,
    Encircled round with stars of sparkling gold;
    I love to gaze upon thy parting ray,
    When silent sleep pervades the busy world.

    And then to wake at midnight's solemn hour,
    When thoughts of death, and judgment yet to come,
    Steal o'er the soul, with sweet persuasive power—
    Leading the mind to her eternal home.

    And then to gaze upon thee, Queen of Night,
    Rolling in silence o'er thy lonely way,
    Where countless stars, beyond thy borrow'd light,
    Are dimly twinkling through thy mazy ray.

    The muse, delighted in her lonely flight,
    Imagination soars from height to height,
    To unseen worlds, of far superior light,
    Where heavenly visions greet, with new delight.

    There on sublimer themes, my muse shall turn,
    While thoughts in holy meditations rove;—
    There deep devotion's lighted lamp shall burn,
    And all the sacred passions sweetly move.

  23. Moonlight

    by William Shakespeare

    How sweet the moonlight sleeps upon this bank!
    Here will we sit, and let the sounds of music
    Creep in your ears: soft stillness, and the night,
    Become the touches of sweet harmony.
    Sit, Jessica: look, how the floor of heaven
    Is thick inlaid with patines of bright gold:
    There’s not the smallest orb which thou behold’st,
    But in his motion like an angel sings,
    Still quiring to the young-ey’d cherubims.

  24. The Moon

    by Eliza Lee Fallen

    O, look at the moon!
    She is shining up there;
    O mother, she looks
    Like a lamp in the air.

    Last week she was smaller,
    And shaped like a bow;
    But now she's grown bigger,
    And round as an O.

    Pretty moon, pretty moon,
    How you shine on the door,
    And make it all bright
    On my nursery floor!

    You shine on my playthings,
    And show me their place,
    And I love to look up
    At your pretty bright face.

    And there is a star
    Close by you, and maybe
    That small twinkling star
    Is your little baby.

  25. "Moon, So Round and Yellow"

    by Matthias Barr

    Moon, so round and yellow,
    Looking from on high,
    How I love to see you
    Shining in the sky.
    Oft and oft I wonder,
    When I see you there,
    How they get to light you,
    Hanging in the air:

    Where you go at morning,
    When the night is past,
    And the sun comes peeping
    O'er the hills at last.
    Sometime I will watch you
    Slyly overhead,
    When you think I'm sleeping
    Snugly in my bed.

  26. Moonlight

    by James W. Whilt

    When the moon has climbed the heavens,
    And the sun has gone to rest,
    And the evening shadows gather,
    That's the time I love the best.

    Seated by our little camp-fire,
    In the forest dark and tall,
    With the silence all around us,
    Save the roar of water-fall—

    Then the deer steal in the meadows,
    Velvet shod, so still are they,
    While among the waving grass-tops
    Spotted fawns are there at play.

    Then to me there comes a memory,
    Of the days, now past and gone,
    When my life was just in blossom,
    I was young and life was dawn.

    When I roamed the virgin forest,
    Just as free as birds that fly,
    With the moonbeams for a candle,
    And my cover was the sky.

    Still the moon shines just as brightly,
    And the stars are just as clear,
    But I see I'm growing older
    Like the ending of the year.

    Frost is gathering on my temple,
    Soon my hair will be like snow,
    But His will we all must follow
    And some day we all must go.

    Yet, I'm ever, ever hoping
    That upon those shores of gold,
    We will have the self-same moonlight
    As we had in the days of old.

  27. The Moon-Sheep

    by Christopher Morley

    The moon seems like a docile sheep,
    She pastures while all people sleep;
    But sometimes, when she goes astray,
    She wanders all alone by day.

    Up in the clear blue morning air
    We are surprised to see her there,
    Grazing in her woolly white,
    Waiting the return of night.

    When dusk lets down the meadow bars
    She greets again her lambs, the stars!

  28. The Hunter's Moon

    by Mathilde Blind

    The Hunter's Moon rides high,
    High o'er the close-cropped plain;
    Across the desert sky
    The herded clouds amain
    Scamper tumultuously,
    Chased by the hounding wind
    That yelps behind.

    The clamorous hunt is done,
    Warm-housed the kennelled pack;
    One huntsman rides alone
    With dangling bridle slack;
    He wakes a hollow tone,
    Far echoing to his horn
    In clefts forlorn.

    The Hunter's Moon rides low,
    Her course is nearly sped.
    Where is the panting roe?
    Where hath the wild deer fled?
    Hunter and hunted now
    Lie in oblivion deep:
    Dead or asleep.

  29. Moonrise

    by Grace Hazard Conkling. (For a Color-Etching by George Senseney)

    Along the dunes the wind leans low
    Where amethystine shadows flow
    Softly among gigantic trees
    Like tides of sleep about their knees.

    Intense and strange the moon sweeps by
    Alone across the hollow sky.
    No cloud, no star, no gray-winged bird,
    Only her breathing sail unheard!

    Cleanly her white bow cuts the dark.
    She cleaves the night with never a spark
    Of fiery spray from sun or star.
    I wonder who the sailors are?

  30. The Rainy Moon

    by Grace Hazard Conkling

    Did you see the rainy moon
    Up above the roofs last night?
    It was like a primrose flower
    When the mist is blowing white,

    When a film of gossamer
    Flutters from the evening tree,
    And the primroses are pale
    And the dusk has come to be.

    I should like to go with you
    Past the primrose-haunted mist
    To that hill among the clouds
    Where we trembled, where we kissed.

  31. Crescent Moon

    by Elizabeth Madox Roberts

    And Dick said, "Look what I have found!"
    And when we saw we danced around,
    And made our feet just tip the ground.

    We skipped our toes and sang, "Oh-lo.
    Oh-who, oh-who, oh what do you know!
    Oh-who, oh-hi, oh-loo, kee-lo!"

    We clapped our hands and sang, "Oh-ee!"
    It made us jump and laugh to see
    The little new moon above the tree.