Please find below various poems relating to coming of age. To each their own, and if you know of a poem that you would like listed here, please use the contact us page to provide this information. Our goal is to make coming of age books a reference site for all things coming of age.
"...beautiful and endearing."
Walk with Edgar Allan Poe through the bells of ringing time.
Hope by Emily Dickinson describes the one thing all humans should always have through all of the stages of coming of age, Hope.
Intimations of Immortality is a spiritual coming of age written by William Wordsworth during the1800s.
Morituri Salutamus by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is a passionate vision of the evolution of youth to old age. He speaks of the strengths and accomplishments of many amazing historical figures, who were well into their senior years when they produced their most amazing works. Longfellow doesn't want to delude his reader though; he explains the fade and decline that inevitably occurs when humans become elderly, but he celebrates this gradual weathering with words that encourage and empower the reader to stop ignoring or dreading this coming of age, but embrace it as the final and ultimate blooming of the human.
The ultimate moment in coming of age is the realization of the struggle and loss of particular moments that were left undone and can only be understood through life's trials and tribulations. Margaret E. Sangster captures this in The Sin of Omission and presents it as a wary but heartfelt warning.
In Progress by Christina Rossetti feels almost like a witness to the growth and struggle of the human spirit.
All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare is a monologue found in the play As You Like It. Shakespeare's witty writing describes coming of age on the stage of life.
Emily Dickinson in A Light Exists In Spring describes the beauty of spring as if it were the human process of coming of age.
Walt Whitman's There Was a Child Went Forth eloquently paints the picture of an internal coming of age of how life's experiences etch definition into the heart of the human soul. Whitman uses nature to make an unforgettable impression.
The Hand That Rocks the Cradle by William Ross Wallace beautifully portrays the efforts and hope a mother brings to the world for her ever growing children. Considering the time and state of mind of most Academics toward women, Wallace's poem is an empowering piece that captures the great value and importance of women's contribution.
If- by Rudyard Kipling is an inspirational poem about the turbulent journey of coming of age from adolescence to adulthood. Kipling eloquently points out the heavy weight of responsibility heaped on the shoulders of youth to rise up and find balance in a world that seems mixed up at times.
Coming of Age by James McDonald is a seasonal poem that explores the evolution of our lives in correlation to the changing of the seasons. There are summers, winters, and springs in all of our lives.
Thanatopsis is a poem celebrating life and embracing the coming of age of death. Old age is always looked upon as a forboding time in human existence, yet a phase we all face, Bryant's poem creates a different vision while clearing the foggy window into the uncertain realm of death, powerfully written.
A Psalm of Life paints a beautiful picture of how much more life is than we actually know. Wadsworth reminds us to not take even a breath for granted, embrace every chance to think, reflect and live to the fullest measure of courage and gratefulness. This poem is awesome!