John Clare

(13 July 1793 – 20 May 1864 / Northamptonshire / England)

I Am - Poem by John Clare

I am: yet what I am none cares or knows,
My friends forsake me like a memory lost;
I am the self-consumer of my woes,
They rise and vanish in oblivious host,
Like shades in love and death's oblivion lost;
And yet I am! and live with shadows tost

Into the nothingness of scorn and noise,
Into the living sea of waking dreams,
Where there is neither sense of life nor joys,
But the vast shipwreck of my life's esteems;
And e'en the dearest--that I loved the best--
Are strange--nay, rather stranger than the rest.

I long for scenes where man has never trod;
A place where woman never smil'd or wept;
There to abide with my creator, God,
And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept:
Untroubling and untroubled where I lie;
The grass below--above the vaulted sky.


Comments about I Am by John Clare

  • Rookie - 120 Points Dylan Fadden (8/13/2015 6:07:00 PM)

    i found it was a very nice poem. well done (Report) Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Rookie - 0 Points Nicole Alston (8/6/2015 5:07:00 PM)

    last verse quoted on Show Time's Penny Dreadful season finale (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 1,433 Points val Rogers (8/5/2015 11:12:00 AM)

    Great poem. I enjoyed it. Guaranteed to cause DREAMS. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 828 Points Crystal Pierce (3/24/2015 9:00:00 PM)

    beautiful poem. I loved it. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 4,541 Points John Richter (2/6/2015 11:48:00 AM)

    Releasing stress..... I guess it's not just the modern highways that bother the @#$% out of us! (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 665 Points Nathan Beery (12/10/2014 7:29:00 PM)

    beautiful poem about one's self and nature. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 883 Points Dean Meredith (12/10/2014 8:05:00 AM)

    I think 'superb' is the required word to describe this. I love it. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 883 Points Dean Meredith (12/10/2014 8:05:00 AM)

    I think 'superb' is the required word to describe this. I love it. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 802 Points Sossi Khachadourian (12/10/2014 3:59:00 AM)

    I long for scenes where man has never trod;
    A place where woman never smil'd or wept;
    There to abide with my creator, God,
    And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept:
    Untroubling and untroubled where I lie;
    The grass below- above the vaulted sky. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 802 Points Sossi Khachadourian (12/10/2014 3:59:00 AM)

    I long for scenes where man has never trod;
    A place where woman never smil'd or wept;
    There to abide with my creator, God,
    And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept:
    Untroubling and untroubled where I lie;
    The grass below- above the vaulted sky. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 39,822 Points Aftab Alam Khursheed (12/10/2014 2:16:00 AM)

    a lovely poem fantastic thank you (Report) Reply

  • Silver Star - 3,868 Points Elizabeth Padillo Olesen (12/10/2014 1:28:00 AM)

    Very good. It is good that Poem Hunter has also the famous poets from whom the new writers can learn from. There is eloquence and unity in this kind of poem by John Clare. This is the first poem I've ever read from him. (Report) Reply

  • Silver Star - 3,868 Points Elizabeth Padillo Olesen (12/10/2014 1:28:00 AM)

    Very good. It is good that Poem Hunter has also the famous poets from whom the new writers can learn from. There is eloquence and unity in this kind of poem by John Clare. This is the first poem I've ever read from him. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 35 Points June Keysha (12/2/2014 9:45:00 PM)

    i love this poem, it feels like talking about my self....
    great..... (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 23,446 Points * Sunprincess * (6/18/2014 11:30:00 AM)

    Into the nothingness of scorn and noise,
    Into the living sea of waking dreams,
    .......in the living sea of waking dreams
    ....we all must sail alone, through life.....
    Where there is neither sense of life nor joys,
    .....and when out to sea, it may just be one continuous storm...
    But the vast shipwreck of my life's esteems;
    ......whereas when you have passed away, the storm is finished
    ....and another's life may be only sweet sunny days...
    And e'en the dearest- that I loved the best-
    ..........i think whom we choose to love
    ........is based upon some choice
    Are strange- nay, rather stranger than the rest.
    .........and some destiny. as when two ships
    ......cross paths on a moonlit night.... (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Karen Wood (12/14/2013 1:29:00 AM)

    This poem seems to convey perfectly the misery and isolation of depression. I love the richness of some of his expressions ' I am the self-consumer of my woes'. Is he consuming his woes, or are his woes consuming him? The line seems to suggest both and it's like viewing one of those optical illusions where the mind flips between the two views but can't hold both at once.

    The sea metaphor of the second verse is just beautiful, 'living sea of waking dreams', ' the vast shipwreck of my life's esteems'. Bleak but beautifully evocative. This poem can be read over and over and never become stale. (Report) Reply

  • Bronze Star - 2,821 Points Bernard Snyder (12/10/2013 10:41:00 AM)

    A very nice expression indeed! (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 1,849 Points Tony Karas (12/10/2012 6:25:00 PM)

    Beyond excellently done. Shames my own feeble attempt at near the same topic but that's the difference between a professional and an amateur. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Justin Gonzalez (12/10/2012 3:44:00 AM)

    Wow, powerful. Wraps up all the sadness one could experience in life in one well written poem. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 0 Points Own-ur-rehman Sheikh (12/10/2011 5:03:00 AM)

    What a remarkable poem this is, The sorrow of loosing and betrayals is clearly visible. I just loved it.

    ☠ £€G€и ÐÅRŸ☠ (Report) Reply

Read all 37 comments »




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Read poems about / on: childhood, memory, lost, woman, sleep, sea, sky, death, god, life, joy, women, rose, dream, friend



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



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