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Shorter Poems for 10-11 year old boys

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Looking for poem suggestions for my 10 1/2 year old boy. The only requirement being it has to be short in length. He has just finished a couple of longer poems and only wants to do shorter ones til the end of the year.


What we have on the list already in case someone is interested.


Wise Old Owl

A wise old owl sat upon an oak;

The more he saw the less he spoke;

The less he spoke the more he heard;

Why aren't we like that wise old bird?

Edward Hersey Richards



All That is Gold Does Not Glitter by J. R. R. Tolkien

All that is gold does not glitter,

Not all those who wander are lost;

The old that is strong does not wither,

Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,

A light from the shadows shall spring;

Renewed shall be blade that was broken,

The crownless again shall be king.




Hold fast to dreams

For if dreams die

Life is a broken-winged bird

That cannot fly.

Hold fast to dreams

For when dreams go

Life is a barren field

Frozen with snow. 

Langston Hughes


What Are Heavy? Sea-Sand And Sorrow by c. Rossetti


What are heavy? Sea-sand and sorrow: 

What are brief? To-day and to-morrow: 

What are frail? Spring blossoms and youth: 

What are deep? The ocean and truth. 


Nonsenses - i


~Edward Lear


There was an Old Man with a beard,

Who said, "It is just as I feared!-

Two owls and a hen,

Four larks and a wren,

Have all built their nests in my beard!"



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Tennyson-The Eagle, The Oak

The Kraken by Tennyson is nice, but might be longer than what he wants. Very dense wording.


Frost has a few nice short ones: Devotion for one, and one of my favorites, The Hardship of Accounting.

Never ask of money spent

Where the spender thinks it went.

Nobody was ever meant

To remember or invent

What he did with every cent.


For fun go check out the books of poems by Shel Silverstein. One of them, Everything On It has some of the funniest stuff I ever read.

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