You can show someone just how much you care, tell your significant other what he or she means to you, or just engage in some old-fashioned seduction with the best love poems. Drawing heavily from classic works, this list of essential love poems can set the mood when inscribed in a Valentine’s Day card or recited over a romantic anniversary dinner.
1. “Sonnet 29” by William Shakespeare
Shakespeare describes how thoughts of his love can brighten his mood on even the darkest of days. Share Sonnet 29 with someone who inspires these same feelings in you.
2. “A Marriage” by Michael Blumenthal
Just when you think you can’t take anymore, your love comes and lightens the load. Using the image of holding up a ceiling, Blumenthal immortalizes the partnership of marriage.
3. “First Love” by John Clare
John Clare aptly describes the feelings brought on by first love – the blushes, the intense focus, and the stealing of your heart.
4. “She Walks in Beauty” by George Gordon, Lord Byron
In She Walks in Beauty, Byron celebrates a pure, ethereal beauty. Share this poem with someone you find beautiful.
5. “Teodoro Luna’s Two Kisses” by Alberto Ríos
The actions in Teodoro Luna’s Two Kisses represent the comfortable understanding stemming from a long relationship. Even the smallest gestures can have romantic meaning when you’ve shared so much time together.
6. “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” by Christopher Marlowe
The speaker promises the world in The Passionate Shepherd to His Love, and you can celebrate the same feeling of wanting to do anything to make a person happy.
7. “anyone lived in a pretty how town” by e.e. cummings
Cummings isn’t the most accessible of poets, but the story that emerges in anyone lived in a pretty how town perfectly illustrates the reality of unrequited love. Perhaps there’s an “anyone” in your life you’ve been admiring from afar?
8. “To His Coy Mistress” by Andrew Marvell
While To His Coy Mistress is a classic seduction poem, the overall concept of seizing the day and making the most of your time together easily applies to more than physical expressions of love.
9. “The Bean Eaters” by Gwendolyn Brooks
Although not a love poem at first glance, The Bean Eaters nonetheless is included among the best love poems thanks to its image of a contented older couple sharing memories. We can all hope to reach this epoch in our relationships.
10. “Annabel Lee” by Edgar Allan Poe
While not a true tale of horror like much of Poe’s work, Annabel Lee is still a haunting tale of lost love.