Poetry On-Line Resources: A Cut to the Chase

Searching for poetry can be both exciting and overwhelming.  Poetry has such an expansive history that the possibilities of what time era and country to select poems from actually could be a factor in your search.  There are literally an endless supply of poems available for you to search through.  To help aid your search the Forensics Community has done some looking around to find a few places for you to begin your poetry endeavor.  And though this article is entitled "On-Line Resources," we've listed a couple non-electronic ones as well.

  1. Library.  Your local library, even your school library, will have anthologies and collections of thousands of poems.  Ask a librarian where the stacks are that hold the poetry, grab an armful of books with titles of interest, and go find a comfy chair to start reading.  If you find any pieces or authors you enjoy, you have thousands of resources around you to find more similar work.  And all of this is free (excluding the cheap price of making copies).
  2. Ask an English teacher.  If you want some suggestions of good poets try asking an English teacher.  Even if they do not read poetry on a regular basis, they do (or did) have to study it.  A good English major/teacher will have logged into their brain titles/names of authors they enjoy.  This includes poets.  Even if they cannot name someone right on cue you might be fortunate enough to have a teacher that will go home, look through their collections of books, and bring you some information the next day.
  3. The Literature Network. This is a free source of the classics.  Unfortunately, the website does not specialize in poetry so you have to look around through the list of author names (or do a search) to find pieces.  Though, with almost 4,000 poems available on the website it is completely worth a look if you know a few names or titles you are interested in.
  4. Poets.org.  Brought to you by the Academy of American Poets.  This site is 14 years old, spoken well of in reviews, and offers poems, essays, interviews, biographies, recordings, and more.  Buy poetry or read some for free.  This is a good place to look around.
  5. The Poetry FoundationNot only does this site offer poetry, it also provides some education.  There are resources for learning about poetry; like a glossary of terms and listings of poetry reading tours.  If you want to get involved in poetry programs, receive a poetry magazine, and more there is information.  But what is important is the site offers poetry to read.
  6. Poetry International WebThis site is good if you want to check-out poetry from foreign countries.  There is a convenient drop-down menu to select a country; there is a fairly large selection too.  What's really amazing is that the site lists poems from other countries with the poem's native language on the left and the English translation on the right.  Thus, if you happen to speak both languages you can compare translations AND perhaps do some crafty cutting by mixing the languages.  Also, some poems offer recordings of readings.

If these sites do not appeal to you, or if you have a specific want in mind, do not forget that a Google search with some sleuthing is all it takes to locate what you desire.  Hopefully though this listing provides some help in the search for poetry pieces.  Happy hunting!