poem index

Poem-A-Day

Poem-a-Day is the original and only daily digital poetry series featuring over 200 new, previously unpublished poems by today's talented poets each year. On weekdays, poems are accompanied by exclusive commentary by the poets. The series highlights classic poems on weekends. Launched in 2006, Poem-a-Day is now distributed via email, web, and social media to 350,000+ readers free of charge and is available for syndication. For more information about how to syndicate Poem-a-Day, contact [email protected].

Fire and Sleet and Candlelight

About this Poem 

“Fire and Sleet and Candlelight” was published in Nets to Catch the Wind (Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1921).

Fire and Sleet and Candlelight

For this you’ve striven
    Daring, to fail:
Your sky is riven
    Like a tearing veil.

For this, you’ve wasted
    Wings of your youth;
Divined, and tasted
    Bitter springs of truth.

From sand unslakèd
    Twisted strong cords,
And wandered naked
    Among trysted swords.

There’s a word unspoken,
    A knot untied.
Whatever is broken
    The earth may hide.

The road was jagged
    Over sharp stones:
Your body’s too ragged
    To cover your bones.

The wind scatters
    Tears upon dust;
Your soul’s in tatters
    Where the spears thrust.

Your race is ended—
    See, it is run:
Nothing is mended
    Under the sun.

Straight as an arrow
    You fall to a sleep
Not too narrow
    And not too deep.

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on May 20, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on May 20, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

previous poems

datesort ascending title author
March 21, 2018 Dear Melissa: TC Tolbert
March 20, 2018 Citizenship Javier Zamora
March 19, 2018 Facing US Amanda Johnston
March 18, 2018 Elegy in Translation Meg Day
March 17, 2018 Ulysses Alfred Lord Tennyson
March 16, 2018 Transubstantiation Matthew Dickman
March 15, 2018 OBIT Victoria Chang
March 14, 2018 Arthritis Carol Moldaw
March 13, 2018 Hide and Seek Charles Simic
March 12, 2018 My Nothings Ama Codjoe

Pages