Sad Poems - Poems For Sad - My Sad Captains

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My Sad Captains - Poem by Thom Gunn

One by one they appear in
the darkness: a few friends, and
a few with historical
names. How late they start to shine!
but before they fade they stand
perfectly embodied, all

the past lapping them like a
cloak of chaos. They were men
who, I thought, lived only to
renew the wasteful force they
spent with each hot convulsion.
They remind me, distant now.

True, they are not at rest yet,
but now they are indeed
apart, winnowed from failures,
they withdraw to an orbit
and turn with disinterested
hard energy, like the stars.


Submitted by Andrew Mayers


Comments about My Sad Captains by Thom Gunn

  • Rookie - 0 Points Kenneth Kaufman (1/20/2017 8:02:00 PM)

    I wouldn't know about it standing up to Sappho, Nick, but I have to disagree that that the poem has much to do with friends; really more to do with those with who one sets as guides for one's own life, whether friends or no. Life goes on; you live it, you move far from those early guides, so far that they may now seem as cold and distant as stars.... and have you been back to DS lately? (Report) Reply

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  • Rookie Nick Capozzoli (4/18/2009 10:30:00 PM)

    This 'little' poem has a classical lyrical ethos and brilliance...it stands up to Sappho. The subject, Gunn's recollection of his friends, could easily have lapsed into sentimentality, just as could have Sappho's. Instead, he puts them into an apallingly cold hard orbit in the classical cosmos. (Report) Reply

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Poems About Sad

  1. 1. A Sad Child , Margaret Atwood
  2. 2. A Fairly Sad Tale , Dorothy Parker
  3. 3. ‘and Ask Ye Why These Sad Tears Stream?’ , Alfred Lord Tennyson
  4. 4. The Sad Mother , Gabriela Mistral
  5. 5. Be Not Sad , James Joyce
  6. 6. A Sad State Of Freedom , Nazim Hikmet
  7. 7. To The Sad Moon , Sir Philip Sidney
  8. 8. Sad In Blue (A Lyric) , Peter S. Quinn
  9. 9. For A Sad Lady , Dorothy Parker
  10. 10. A Sad Sad Story , Joyce Hemsley
  11. 11. I Don'T Want To See You Sad , Aldo Kraas
  12. 12. Weep You No More, Sad Fountains , Anonymous Olde English
  13. 13. The Sad Shepherd , William Butler Yeats
  14. 14. Sad-Eyed And Soft And Grey , William Morris
  15. 15. To A Sad Daughter , Michael Ondaatje
  16. 16. How Sad, How Sad , Emmanuel George Cefai
  17. 17. The Bad Season Makes The Poet Sad , Robert Herrick
  18. 18. Sonnet Xxxi: With How Sad Steps, O Moon , Sir Philip Sidney
  19. 19. Sad Song , unknown poet
  20. 20. Sad Green Eyes , Linda Ori
  21. 21. I Sing A Sad Song , Dorothy (Alves) Holmes
  22. 22. In My Own Shire, If I Was Sad , Alfred Edward Housman
  23. 23. Sad Is Stupid , Alison Cassidy
  24. 24. With How Sad Steps, O Moon, Thou Climb's.. , William Wordsworth
  25. 25. The Lacking Sense Scene.--A Sad-Coloured.. , Thomas Hardy
  26. 26. A Sad Wind From The Sea , David Harris
  27. 27. The Snow's Sad Drift , Robert Rorabeck
  28. 28. ! To A God-Daughter On Her Sad Poem , Michael Shepherd
  29. 29. Sonnet Iii: With How Sad Steps , Sir Philip Sidney
  30. 30. Phantasmagoria Canto Vii ( Sad Souvenaun.. , Lewis Carroll
  31. 31. ’tis A Sad, Mad World! , Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  32. 32. To A Sad Girl , Uriah Hamilton
  33. 33. My Sad Captains , Thom Gunn
  34. 34. Sad , Sylvia Chidi
  35. 35. Old Joe Sad To Say 'sept 97' , Francis Duggan
  36. 36. Peacock Story 8 - A Sad Poem , Alison Cassidy
  37. 37. Nia Na Sad Ang Wakwak , RIC S. BASTASA
  38. 38. Happy & Sad , Sumita Datta
  39. 39. Please Dont Be Sad , Amy Louise Kerswell
  40. 40. Sad Love Songs , Aldo Kraas
  41. 41. A Leader’s Sad Demise , Dr. A.Celestine Raj Manohar ..
  42. 42. ! ! A Sad Tale Of Consumerism , Michael Shepherd
  43. 43. A Sad Song (Its A Sad Song When Writers .. , Dorothy (Alves) Holmes
  44. 44. Some Days Are Sad , Aldo Kraas
  45. 45. Money Corrupts That Does Seem Sad To Say , Francis Duggan
  46. 46. Sad Sad Day , Laura Green
  47. 47. The Sad Day , Thomas Flatman
  48. 48. Close Those Sad Sad Eyes , Beautiful Grim
  49. 49. Bored And Sad , Mikhail Yuryevich Lermontov
  50. 50. The Journey Of A Poem Compared To All Th.. , Delmore Schwartz
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