Poetry Friday: Christmas Poems

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I mentioned previously that I love the Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets series. So I ordered myself the volume Everyman’s volume of Christmas Poems in honor of the holiday. (Thank goodness for Amazon’s Marketplace where I could get it for half price!). I really enjoyed a retreat in to poetry about my favorite holiday and season, Christmas.

Christmas Poems has an eclectic mix of modern and old poems, from John Milton to W.H. Auden and Chinua Achebe. It has the traditional favorites, such as Clement Moore’s “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas,” and it has a section of Christmas carols (traditional Christmas carols, religious or not, not holiday songs like “Frosty the Snowman” and “Winter Wonderland”). But it also has a number of previously unknown to me poems that helped me get in the mood for the seasons. I’ve added a lot of poets to my “poet’s to read” list (soon to be posted under “reading lists”).

If you are interested in a nice, pocket-sized anthology of Christmas poetry, Everyman’s edition is very nice. It doesn’t have every poem or carol you may want to read, but it has a nice variety.

Favorite Poems (not including Christmas carols): “The Annunciation” by Elizabeth Jennings; “A Visit from St. Nicholas” (aka “The Night Before Christmas”) by Clement Moore; “Nativity” by John Donne; “The Maid-Servant at the Inn” by Dorothy Parker; “The Journey of the Magi” by T.S.Eliot; “A Christmas Poem” by Dick Davis; “Lady Selecting Her Christmas Cards” by Phyllis McGinley; from “In Memoriam” (aka “Ring Out, Wild Bells”) by Alfred, Lord Tennyson; from “For the Time Being” by W.H. Auden; “Untrimming the Tree” by John N. Morris; “Twelfth Night’ by Phyllis McGinley.

Reviewed on December 19, 2008

About the author 

Rebecca Reid

Rebecca Reid is a homeschooling, stay-at-home mother seeking to make the journey of life-long learning fun by reading lots of good books. Rebecca Reads provides reviews of children's literature she has enjoyed with her children; nonfiction that enhances understanding of educational philosophies, history and more; and classical literature that Rebecca enjoys reading.

  • Kathy, that’s what I like about anthologies: you don’t have to “understand.” I think poetry in anthologies, especially like this one, is meant to be read and enjoyed. I like the careful setting of a scene and an image in poetry.

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