Spring — a season of rebirth and renewal — has always captivated poets. This article takes you through a curated list of 10 famous poets and their short spring poems, each a masterpiece in encapsulating the essence of spring in just a few lines.
Famous Short Poems About Spring
1. A Light Exists in Spring by Emily Dickinson
A Light exists in Spring
Not present on the Year
At any other period —
When March is scarcely here
A Color stands abroad
On Solitary Fields
That Science cannot overtake
But Human Nature feels…
Emily Dickinson captures the transient yet powerful allure of spring light, something not found at any other time of the year. She uses her trademark minimalist style, employing dashes and sparse language, to underscore the ephemeral beauty and unique illumination that spring provides, especially in its early days.
2. Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost
Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.
Robert Frost delves into the ephemeral beauty of spring, likening the first green to gold — a precious, fleeting element. With an AABB rhyme scheme and a concise structure, the poem succinctly captures the essence of spring’s impermanence. The title “Nothing Gold Can Stay” encapsulates the transitory nature of beauty and life itself.
3. Spring and All by William Carlos Williams
By the road to the contagious hospital
under the surge of the blue
mottled clouds driven from the
northeast-a cold wind. Beyond, the
waste of broad, muddy fields
brown with dried weeds, standing and fallen
patches of standing water
the scattering of tall trees
William Carlos Williams employs free verse to present a less idyllic, more nuanced view of spring. The poem starts with stark imagery — a contagious hospital and a cold wind — reminding us that spring is not just about renewal but also follows winter’s decay and illness. The jarring opening prepares us for the beauty that spring will eventually bring.
4. In Just- by e.e. cummings
spring when the world is mud-
luscious the little
whistles far and wee
and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it’s
e.e. cummings uses unconventional structure and punctuation to capture the joy and energy of spring. The poem celebrates the season’s mud-lusciousness and the excitement it brings, especially to children. His playful and experimental style serves to encapsulate the whimsical nature of spring itself.
5. April Rain Song by Langston Hughes
Let the rain kiss you
Let the rain beat upon your head with silver liquid drops
Let the rain sing you a lullaby
The rain makes still pools on the sidewalk
The rain makes running pools in the gutter
The rain plays a little sleep song on our roof at night
And I love the rain.
Langston Hughes offers a soothing and serene perspective on a rainy spring day. Using simple language, the poem invites readers to embrace the calming and nurturing aspect of spring rain. It personifies rain as a gentle force capable of delivering comfort, almost singing a lullaby to the earth.
6. There Is No Time Like Spring by Christina Rossetti
There is no time like Spring,
When life’s alive in everything,
Before new nestlings sing,
Before cleft swallows speed their journey back
Along the trackless track,–
God guides their wing,
He spreads their table that they nothing lack,–
Before the daisy grows a common flower,
Before the sun has power
To scorch the world up in his noontide hour.
Christina Rossetti encapsulates the quintessence of spring as a time when “life’s alive in everything.” This Victorian-era poem reflects a romantic and optimistic view of the season, focusing on birth, renewal, and the return of migratory birds as symbols of love and life.
7. Lines Written in Early Spring by William Wordsworth
Through primrose tufts, in that green bower,
The periwinkle trailed its wreaths;
And ’tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.
The birds around me hopped and played,
Their thoughts I cannot measure:—
But the least motion which they made
It seemed a thrill of pleasure.
William Wordsworth, a central figure in the Romantic movement, offers a meditation on the harmonious relationship between man and nature. The poem reflects on the innate joy in flowers and the surrounding natural world, while also subtly touching on the imbalance that human actions have created in this otherwise peaceful environment.
8. When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d by Walt Whitman
When lilacs last in the dooryard bloom’d,
And the great star early droop’d in the western sky in the night,
I mourn’d, and yet shall mourn with ever-returning spring.
Ever-returning spring, trinity sure to me you bring,
Lilac blooming perennial and drooping star in the west,
And thought of him I love.
Though primarily an elegy, Walt Whitman’s long-form poem contains beautifully poignant stanzas that capture the essence of spring. Whitman weaves themes of life, death, and renewal through his reflection on the blooming lilacs in his dooryard. The recurring spring serves as a metaphor for hope and rebirth even amidst mourning.
9. To Spring by William Blake
O thou with dewy locks, who lookest down
Through the clear windows of the morning, turn
Thine angel eyes upon our western isle,
Which in full choir hails thy approach, O Spring!
The hills tell each other, and the list’ning
Valleys hear; all our longing eyes are turned
Up to thy bright pavilions: issue forth,
And let thy holy feet visit our clime.
William Blake, a seminal figure in the Romantic Age, employs classical and religious imagery to paint a divine portrait of spring. The poem is a plea to the personified Spring, imploring it to look favorably upon the “western isle” (likely Britain).
Blake’s style combines both the mystical and the earthly, elevating Spring to an almost sacred status. The poem encapsulates the deep sense of renewal and spiritual awakening that is often associated with this season.
10. Haikus on Spring by Matsuo Basho
An old silent pond
A frog jumps into the pond—
Splash! Silence again.
Matsuo Basho, a master of the Haiku form, perfectly encapsulates the transient and simple beauty of spring in just 17 syllables. While not explicitly about spring, the Haiku reflects the quietude and sudden bursts of activity that one can associate with the season. The poem serves as a potent reminder of nature’s simplicity and the short-lived moments that make spring special.
Through different styles, forms, and themes, these 10 famous poets have enriched our understanding and appreciation of spring. Their short spring poems invite us to see the world anew, offering a glimpse into the eternal beauty that spring brings each year.