Philip Larkin

(9 August 1922 – 2 December 1985 / West Midlands / England)

Philip Larkin Poems

If you see a poem only with title, it is listed that way because of copyright reasons.
1. The Spirit Wooed 1/1/2004
2. Story 1/3/2003
3. The Little Lives Of Earth And Form 1/3/2003
4. New Eyes Each Year 1/3/2003
5. Send No Money 1/3/2003
6. Triple Time 1/3/2003
7. Since The Majority Of Me 1/3/2003
8. Like The Train's Beat 1/3/2003
9. Skin 1/3/2003
10. Modesties 1/3/2003
11. The View 3/19/2003
12. Night Music 1/3/2003
13. Myxomatosis 1/3/2003
14. TrÄUmerei 1/13/2003
15. This Is The First Thing 1/3/2003
16. Money 1/3/2003
17. He Hears That His Beloved Has Become Engaged 1/3/2003
18. Long Sight In Age 1/3/2003
19. Vers De SociÉTÉ 1/13/2003
20. Solar 1/3/2003
21. The School In August 1/3/2003
22. The Mower 1/3/2003
23. Reasons For Attendance 1/3/2003
24. To Put One Brick Upon Another 1/3/2003
25. I Have Started To Say 1/3/2003
26. How Distant 1/3/2003
27. The Importance Of Elsewhere 1/3/2003
28. If Hands Could Free You, Heart 1/3/2003
29. Wants 1/3/2003
30. Whatever Happened? 1/3/2003
31. Maturity 1/3/2003
32. Next Please 1/3/2003
33. I Remember, I Remember 1/3/2003
34. Mcmxiv 1/3/2003
35. Nothing To Be Said 1/3/2003
36. When First We Faced, And Touching Showed 1/13/2003
37. The Building 1/3/2003
38. To My Wife 1/13/2003
39. On Being Twenty-Six 4/2/2010
40. Homage To A Government 1/3/2003

Comments about Philip Larkin

  • Peter Henderson (4/15/2018 11:30:00 AM)

    Larkin is like Fritos: you can read a book of his poems but nobody can read just one. Such a tonic!

    1 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Paul Geiger Paul Geiger (11/29/2014 2:32:00 PM)

    New, impressive biography out by James Booth. Reviewed in WSJ,11/28/14. Maybe Dan Reynolds should read.

    18 person liked.
    9 person did not like.
  • Dan Reynolds Dan Reynolds (9/23/2014 7:31:00 AM)

    You show some promise, but the archaic language lets you down. Try to read some good contemporary poets and expand your thoughts without the restriction of form.

    13 person liked.
    40 person did not like.
  • Robert Crick (6/8/2014 2:24:00 PM)

    This Be The Verse
    They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
    They may not mean to, but they do.
    They fill you with the faults they had
    And add some extra, just for you.

    But they were fucked up in their turn
    By fools in old-style hats and coats,
    Who half the time were soppy-stern
    And half at one another's throats.

    Man hands on misery to man.
    It deepens like a coastal shelf.
    Get out as early as you can,
    And don't have any kids yourself.

    Philip Larkin

    This Be The Children’s Verse
    They suss you out, your girls and boys.
    You may not know it, but they do.
    They find out all your faults and foibles
    Because they concentrate on you.

    Their eyes and ears are sharp, perceptive,
    Slicing through your best disguise.
    And if you grit your teeth and take it,
    Their advice might make you wise.

    They cannot cure your old compulsions;
    They will not stroke away the aches
    That plague your heart and grieve your bones
    But they can learn from your mistakes.


    This Be The Grandparents’ Verse
    They tuck you up, your mum and dad.
    They may not want to, but they do.
    They give you games and stories they had
    And make up new ones, just for you.

    And they were tucked up in their turn
    By parent figures in the past,
    Who helped them, growing up, to learn
    That pain and misery end at last.

    Your kids can comfort smaller kids.
    And get some pleasure from this chore.
    The fretful baby’s drooping eyelids
    Move our hearts to ask for more.

    Robert Crick (2008)

    64 person liked.
    16 person did not like.
  • Cody Dickerson (4/30/2013 6:54:00 PM)

    How come Larkin's poem, This Be the Verse, is not in the poem list?

    54 person liked.
    23 person did not like.
  • Chris-ann Chikane (10/4/2012 5:15:00 AM)

    I request your permission to include extract from Poemhunter: Night Music by Philip Larkin We will use subsequent editions of the above-referenced book, in all media of expression now known or later developed, and in all foreign language translations and other derivative works published or prepared by Mystar Education & Business Solutions (Pty) Ltd or its licensees, for distribution throughout the world, and also in versions made by non-profit organisations for use by blind or physically handicapped persons.

    Appropriate credit will be given on the imprint page of the book. If specific credit is required, please provide this.

    If the permission request relates to an image, please send us a high-resolution JPEG, TIFF or PDF of the image, since this will ensure the quality of the image during printing.

    Please contact me
    Kind Regards
    Chris-Ann Chikane
    +27 11 018-5007
    chrism@starschools.co.za

    14 person liked.
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  • Chris-ann Chikane (10/4/2012 4:56:00 AM)

    I request your permission to include the attached extrac from poemhunter: Title: Night-Music by Philip Larkins.We want to use this and all subsequent editions of the above-referenced book, in all media of expression now known or later developed, and in all foreign language translations and other derivative works published or prepared by Mystar Education & Business Solutions (Pty) Ltd or its licensees, for distribution throughout the world, and also in versions made by non-profit organisations for use by blind or physically handicapped persons.

    Appropriate credit will be given on the imprint page of the book. If specific credit is required, please provide this.

    If the permission request relates to an image, please send us a high-resolution JPEG, TIFF or PDF of the image, since this will ensure the quality of the image during printing.

    Kind Regards
    Chris-Ann Chikane
    chrism@starschools.co.za

    13 person liked.
    38 person did not like.
  • Marcus Clements (6/22/2012 1:38:00 PM)

    I am probably making a very silly error....I am unable to select Phillip Larkin’s poems; can anyone help?

    28 person liked.
    20 person did not like.
  • Tai Chi Italy (7/16/2011 6:44:00 PM)

    Well it wasn't mum and dad who phucked this poets poems up! It was poemshuntered down and deleted.

    Philip! if you are up there, curse them for their bad taste.

    with a smile from

    Tai, from his neck of the midland woods

    24 person liked.
    15 person did not like.
  • Ron Price Ron Price (12/2/2009 11:38:00 PM)

    Poetry is like trying to remember a tune you've forgotten... A poem is written because the poet gets a sudden vision.....he juggles with sounds and associations which will best express the original vision. It is done quite intuitively, sometimes esoterically, sometimes with a very common touch. That is why the poet never thinks of the reader. The vision has something to do with sex. I don't know what it is; it's subtle, elusive, indefineable. It's not surprising, obviously two creative forces in alliance, closely connected.

    The result is a poetry of self-indulgence, the patter of the entertainer, fodder for future social historians from a poet who needs emotional isolation, from a poet who touches our hearts by showing his own, who reveals the paradoxes and enigmas of our lives by putting his own on the table, who provides, for me, perspectives on unity that emerge out of aloneness and solitude. -Ron Price with thanks to Andrew Swarbrick, Out of Reach: The Poetry of Philip Larkin, St. Martin 's Press, NY,1995, p.21.

    He pursues self-definition,
    the nature of identity,
    through separateness,
    exclusion and difference,
    negative self-definition,
    a voice of Englishness
    back in that ninth and
    early tenth stage of history1,
    after the loss of imperial power,
    diminished influence and, yes,
    a new value to English experience.

    A remorseful tone, secular
    but communal and telling,
    not untrue, not unkind and
    on the margins, exposed to
    the beyond, imprisoned in a
    personality, something hidden,
    something he has been given,
    reticence-English privacy ethic:
    where difference merges into
    absolute unity; where special
    uniqueness and loneliness are
    clarified as oneness, endless
    continuities and discontinuities.

    Ron Price

    1 1953-1963-ninth stage of history; 1963-1973-first ten years of the tenth stage of history. Larkin did not write 'many poems after 1973.'(ibid., p.164)
    --------

    16 person liked.
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Best Poem of Philip Larkin

Church Going

Once I am sure there's nothing going on
I step inside, letting the door thud shut.
Another church: matting, seats, and stone,
And little books; sprawlings of flowers, cut
For Sunday, brownish now; some brass and stuff
Up at the holy end; the small neat organ;
And a tense, musty, unignorable silence,
Brewed God knows how long. Hatless, I take off
My cycle-clips in awkward reverence,

Move forward, run my hand around the font.
From where I stand, the roof looks almost new-
Cleaned or restored? Someone would know: I don't.
Mounting the lectern, I...

Read the full of Church Going

Mother, Summer, I

My mother, who hates thunder storms,
Holds up each summer day and shakes
It out suspiciously, lest swarms
Of grape-dark clouds are lurking there;
But when the August weather breaks
And rains begin, and brittle frost
Sharpens the bird-abandoned air,
Her worried summer look is lost,

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