Gothic Poems: 16 Creators Embrace the Somber Side of Art

Gothic poems stand for more than darkness! On one hand, the word gothic embodies everything macabre about humanity. Indeed, orators expressing a darker theme stands alongside light-hearted topics! On the other, darkness is multilayered. Writing is truly a companion to everyone’s life.

Gothic Poems. A lantern glows in the night sky. A tree sits on the left. File name: GothicPoems1.jpgPhoto by Marko Blažević on Unsplash
Gothic Poetry’s Roots

During the 19th century, Edgar Allen Poe gave gothic poetry a voice. Pieces such as “Annabel Lee” and “The Raven” conveys loss and heartbreak. His sadness speaks to many who searches for kindred spirits to listen. Christina Rossetti was another poet with gothic roots. Her piece “Goblin Market” is well renowned, warnings of goblin men creeping in orchards on summer days.

Gothic Poems: Expressive and Emotional

As time moved on, the definition of gothic broadened. For example, the term specifically defines a foreboding of bad omens. This could describe either a paranormal experience or a traumatic event in life. Poets express somber times in a variety of instances. Despite its horror origins, gothic poems reflect both an appreciation of the eccentric and a yearning for acceptance.

16 Gothic Poems From Talented Artists

This group features poets unashamed of their dark side! These artists use music and spoken word to share their unique outlook on life. Despite their departure of sunny passages, their words represent power.

Rios de la Luz: “Itza”

Great grandma, also known as Abuelita, died in her sleep.Her bed was in the middle of the forest…A giant maple leaf covered her face,her long, white hairSpread above her head and reachedthe edges of her bed…

Books by Rios De La Luz: Itza

Lanf Leav, “Sunday Best”

Do you remember that night I turned up on your doorstep?I was wearing my Sunday best.You watched the mascara as it ran down like fault lines,and you knew there was bloodon my lips.

Books by Lang Leav: Memories (Volume 3), Sad Girls

Donna Lynch, “My Girls Are Always”

My girls are always vicious,beautiful wolves and serpentsin their truest form, andI like to believe they are pieces of me,If it’s possible to have that much ugly historyetched upon my bones.

Books by Donna Lynch: Daughters of Lilith, Ladies and Other Vicious Creatures

Dua Saleh, “Pins and Needles”

When you prick a rainbow with a needlewhat color does it bleed?For me it bleeds Black.Black is a lingering soot that clings to an oak treeafter her father burns her body aliveand writes her deadname in her eulogy…

Dua Saleh’s website

Nayo Jones, “Healing”

I had someone tell me once I could not love anyone elseuntil I learned to love myself.This time I got to laugh, this timethe sick joke was mine…was me.Might as well wait forever…

More Info about Nayo Jones: Poetry/Pedagogy Profile

Joanna Valente, “Lake of Blood”

What is the first wordyou rememberthat lit up a burning ocean,a fleshburning of its ownerwhose name was burned into your back,unsaid and unknown.

Books by Joanna Valente: Marys of the Sea, Sexting Ghosts

PJ Harvey, “On a Dirt Road”

We drove up the mountain,turned off the engineclimbed through a barricade and walked towards the villagethrough a thousand fallen plums…

Books by PJ Harvey: The Hollow of the Hand

Christina Rosettie, “An October Garden

In my Autumn garden I was fainto mourn among my scattered roses;Alas for that last rosebud which unclosesTo Autumn’s languid sun and rainWhen all the world is on the wane!Which has not felt the sweet constraint of June,Nor heard the nightingale in tune…

Books by Christina Rosetti: The Complete Poems, Goblin Market and Other Poems

amanda lovelace, “to make monsters out of girls”

I would be lying if I ever saidyou served no greater purposein the book of my life.There is at least one good deedthat I can attribute to you.Only after you left me strandedand I found myself still breathingthat I knew I could withstandeverything that came after you…

Books by amanda lovelace: To Make Monsters Out of Girls, The Witch Doesn’t Burn In This One, The Mermaid’s Voice Returns In This One

Edgar Allan Poe, “The Raven”

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore— While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping, As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door. “’Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door— Only this and nothing more.”

Books by Edgar Allen Poe: Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allen Poe

Alfred Tennyson, “The Lady of Shalott”

On either side the river lie Long fields of barley and of rye, That clothe the wold and meet the sky; And thro’ the field the road runs by To many-tower’d Camelot…

Books by Alfred Tennyson: The Complete Poetical Works of Alfred Tennyson, Idylls of the King

Nikita Gill, “Lessons From Hephaestus”

If hate is what made you,how does one replace it with love?You learn sweetness despite beingbuilt with jealous commands,You choose a different paththan your blood demands…

Books from Nikita Gill: Great Goddesses: Life Lessons From Myths and Monsters, Fierce Fairytales: Poems and Stories to Stir Your Soul

Pablo Neruda, “Tonight I Can Write The Saddest Lines”

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.Write, for example, “The night is shatteredand the blue stars shiver in the distance.The night wind revolves in the sky and sings“

Books by Pablo Neruda: The Poetry of Pablo Naruda, Odes to Common Things

W.S. Merwin, “Thanks”

Listenwith the night falling we are saying thank youwe are stopping on the bridges to bow from the railingswe are running out of the glass roomswith our mouths full of food to look at the skyand say thank youwe are standing by the water thanking itstanding by the windows looking out in our directionsback from a series of hospitals back from a mugging after funerals we are saying thank youafter the news of the deadwhether or not we knew them we are saying thank you…

Books by W.S. Merwin: The Essential W.S. Merwin, The Moon Before Morning

Rupi Kaur, “Excerpt From Milk and Honey”

The woman who comes after mewill be a bootleg version of who I am.She will try to write poems for youto erase the ones I’ve left memorized on your lips, buther lines can never punch you in the stomach the way mine did

Books by Rupi Kaur: Milk and Honey, The Sun and Her Flowers

Trista Mateer, “What I Would Tell You If I Were Not Stubborn”

You are not the moon, or the sunor a planet, or a dwarf star.I am not stuck in your gravitational pull.You are a girl too far away,with chapped lips and messy skinand yellow hair and I love you…

Books by Trista Meteer: Honeybee, Aphrodite Made Me Do It

Gothic Poems: Additional Links

Want more expressive material? 25 Dark Poems for When You Want to Explore the Shadows has what you need! 14 Gorgeous Poems Written and Performed by Poets of Color also highlights strong talent!

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