poem index

Halloween Poems

"Be silent in that solitude,
Which is not loneliness—for then
The spirits of the dead, who stood
In life before thee, are again
In death around thee, and their will
Shall overshadow thee; be still."

—From "Spirits of the Dead" by Edgar Allan Poe

Find tricks and treats this Halloween with the following selection of poems featuring haunted houses, goblins, vampires, ghosts, and ghouls, along with a Halloween-inspired lesson plan and essays on poets’ graves, poet costumes and more.

Halloween Poems

Dirge” by Thomas Lovell Beddoes
We do lie beneath the grass …

Low Barometer” by Robert Bridges
The south-wind strengthens to a gale ...

Halloween” by Robert Burns
Upon that night, when fairies light …

The Giaour [Unquenched, unquenchable]” by George Gordon Byron
… Unquenched, unquenchable …

Hallowe’en Charm” by Arthur Guiterman
Fern seed, hemp seed, water of the well …

Sonnet 100” by Lord Brooke Fulke Greville
In night when colors all to black are cast …

Hallow-E’en, 1914” by Winifred M. Letts
“Why do you wait at your door, woman …

Haunted Houses” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
All houses wherein men have lived and died …

The Raven” by Edgar Allan Poe
Once upon a midnight dreary …

All Hallows Night” by Lizette Woodworth Reese
Two things I did on Hallows Night:—

Bats” by Paisley Rekdal
unveil themselves in dark …

Theme in Yellow” by Carl Sandburg
I spot the hills …

Macbeth, Act IV, Scene I [Round about the cauldron go]” by William Shakespeare
Round about the cauldron go …

Vampire Poems

The Vampire” by Conrad Aiken
She rose among us where we lay …

The Vampire” by Madison Julius Cawein
A lily in a twilight place?

"Christabel [Beneath the lamp]" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Beneath the lamp the lady bowed...

"The Bride of Corinth [From my grave to wander]" by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
From my grave to wander I am forc'd...

"Lamia [Left to herself]" by John Keats
Left to herself, the serpent now began...

The Vampyre” by John Stagg
“Why looks my lord so deadly pale?

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Ghost Poems

"Unbidden" by Rae Armantrout
The ghosts swarm...

"How Can It Be I Am No Longer I" by Lucie Brock-Broido
Winter was the ravaging in the scarified...

The Apparition” by John Donne
When by thy scorn, O murd’ress, I am dead …

Ghosts and Fashion” by Elaine Equi
Although it no longer has a body …

Shadwell Stair” by Wilfred Owen
I am the ghost of Shadwell Stair …

"Lenore" by Edgar Allan Poe
Ah broken is the golden bowl! the spirit flown forever...

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More on Halloween and Poetry

James Merrill and the Other World

Read this essay about James Merrill and his use of the Ouija board in writing poetry.

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Poets' Graves

Scour American cemeteries for your favorite poets by reading "Death Be Not Proud," a roundup of where the bards of the past are buried.

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Poems about the Underworld

Follow Dante, Virgil, Milton, Blake, and others on a journey into the depths of hell.

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Lesson Plan: Ghosts and Spirits

Try these activities about Halloween-related poems in the classroom.

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Poet Costumes

Whether you’re heading to a party with a literary theme or trying to impress your English teacher this Halloween, here are a few inexpensive costume ideas worth trying on.

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