Read Committed to Memory: 100 Best Poems to Memorize by John Hollander Online


Poet John Hollander has divided the poems into tales, sonnets, songs, meditations and counsels. Published in partnership with The Academy of American Poets....

Title : Committed to Memory: 100 Best Poems to Memorize
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781885983152
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 160 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Committed to Memory: 100 Best Poems to Memorize Reviews

  • Mamabee
    2019-06-23 01:38

    Fantastic collection of poems. I read about it in a New York Times article, ordered it from inter-library loan, and checked it out as many times as I could and still turned it back in late. If you're not a regular reader of poetry, this is a good one to start with. I was amazed at how many literary references and everyday turns of speech I recognized from these classic poems!

  • Cynthia
    2019-06-20 04:54

    This is a collection of mostly 19th and 20th century poems selected for their suitability for reading aloud and memorization. Some were familiar, or had familiar lines, but most were not. I read this aloud for my own enjoyment and picked at least one to memorize just for pleasure. The author's introduction has some good pointers on how to read or recite a poem aloud that will enhance the experience for listeners.

  • Andy Kline
    2019-06-12 05:44

    Easy read. Much to contemplate. "The Darkling Thrush" was my favorite.

  • Paula
    2019-06-15 04:52

    What I like about this book is its emphasis on reading poetry with the correct itonation. Then again, I read Hollander's Sound and Sense, so he really believes in sound being a big part of poetic form. Anyway, this particular collection is divided into five categories (ranging from "Sonnets" to "Songs" to "Meditations") and include both well-known poets (from Shakespeare to Tennyson to Dickinson to Whitman) and less well-known ones. The focus is on poems that are short enough to memorize (hence the title) and, for the most part, rhyme or have a chorus (again, facilitating memorization).Even though I haven't memorized many of these poems (one need to reread them several times before that can happen), many of the ones included are so memorable (i.e., oft quoted) that one can read along with ease.I read this book a long time ago, so I was happy to find it again. There are some poems I wish had been included (especially since I naturally tend to add my own personal itonation to each poem as I read it) and others that I probably would have omitted but, overall, this is a nice collection for someone with the desire to commit to memory many of the best poems ever written.

  • Jill
    2019-05-28 00:31

    This collection was recommended as a start for appreciating poetry and sharing it with my children. I chose to read it first myself before sharing it with them and, for now, I believe that was wise. Poems to me are more like people - there is much to discover I. Each one and repeated readings of a poem reveal more about the author, the time, the culture and the reader. I wanted to know the poems or have met each one at least once before introducing them to my family. Strange, I suppose - but poems aren't a read one races through or by or any other manner of travel. Poems are stop and stay and carry-with-you literature.This collection brought together poems and poets I knew well and some I had heard of but never read as well as some which were completely new.At a poem a day, this will be a good winter book to read over hot chocolate by our fireplace. It is a friendly sort of book - with enough surprises to keep the relationship interesting.

  • Monical
    2019-06-03 01:52

    Picked this out from books that I own because my sister's book club is including a "favorite poem" month-- there are some real favorites in this collection, although I miss a few--several Shakespeare sonnets are included, but not my favorite, sonnet 29 "When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes" and includes several that I think are dogs like Kipling's "If" (yuck). Got to revisit a few I hadn't thought of for a while-- Shelly "Ozymandias" and a couple Frost (though not "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" I love that tired old poem!). It does include the Frost "good fences make good neighbors" poem ("Mending Wall") which seems awfully timely! Also includes the scary Yeats "The Second Coming" that Stephen King quoted in "The Stand." The poem is even scarier than the book, very impressive at only 22 lines.

  • Caroline
    2019-06-18 04:41

    This physically handsome book has an excellent concept: a selection of poems that are not just wonderful to read, but also ideal for memorization. While some of the memorization is too difficult -- like other reviewers, I think Frost offers better candidates for memorization than "Mending Wall" -- other poems are well suited to committing to memory, like cummings' "anyone lived in a pretty how town;" Hopkins' "Spring and Fall;" and, yes, Lear's "The Owl and the Pussycat." The acts of memorization gives ownership to the poem unlike other reading experiences, and provides sustenance long after the book is read.

  • Danielle
    2019-06-19 05:52

    I think I'm a poetry plebian. It seems like the poetry I like most is that which is most appealing to the general public. I like the stuff that has a strong meter, is easy to memorize, and expresses an idea in an out-of-the-ordinary but easy-to-appreciate kind of way. So, this collection was right up my alley. I didn't read it all, but what I did read, I enjoyed. I particularly loved the first piece, simply titled "Sonnet." To me, it encapsulated in a beautiful way two of my favorite things: flowing water and music. Beautiful. This is one I wouldn't mind owning.

  • nicebutnubbly
    2019-06-22 05:40

    Someday, I am going to put together a book like this only MUCH MUCH BETTER. I memorize a lot of poetry, and this book was a dud - lots of classics, but few of them poems one (I) would want to memorize. There are several schools of thought on memorizing poetry - there's what one "should" memorize (HI, western canon), what is "easy" to memorize, and then there's what one might want to memorize because it's amazing. A good book would blend all of these aspects far better than this one does.

  • Patricia
    2019-06-04 01:32

    My poetry project has me reading more poems; I need to read poetry to know what I want to memorize. This has some great suggestions, including "The New Colossus" by Emma Lazarus. Most people only know the final few lines of this sonnet: "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddle masses yearning to breathe free." It also includes "Casey at the Bat" and other gems, as well as some more obscure ones.

  • Kathleen
    2019-06-16 05:48

    This is a nice collection of poems. I don't think every one is for everyone-- it's sort of a weird and electic collection, and it would have been nice had Hollander shared his criteria for collection-- but as a whole it's a fun little read. I'd get it out of the library rather than purchasing it, though. NB: most of the poems are best read aloud.

  • Cindy
    2019-05-28 01:26

    This is a very approachable and readable group of poems for someone like me who wants to be in tune with and affected by all the poems but rarely achieves it. Many of my favorite poems and poets are included and indeed I have been persuaded to memorize at least a few loose stanzas. Really lucky to have randomly found this book at the library.

  • R. C.
    2019-06-03 23:52

    I just kept thinking, "WHY?" as I was browsing these selections. Why would I want to have THAT poem in my head forever? Sure, these poems are well-known, popular, important, but also they are largely gruesome, depressing, and outmoded. I don't have so much brainspace free that I can afford to put that sort of thing in here alongside the happy classic poems of my culture.

  • Jackie Rose
    2019-06-25 05:26

    I love this book! I grabbed it on my way out to sit on the porch with a cup of tea and ended up sitting there for a while, reading poems from this book out loud to myself. I read poetry frequently and found this to be a great collection. Enjoy!

  • Margit
    2019-06-14 03:46

    Some good poems; some I didn't really care for. I wrote down the names of some poets I'd like to further read. I've never studied poetry, but one of the books I recently read on writing suggested reading it, and I agree it's a good idea, since I like lyrical rhythmic prose and alliteration.

  • Krista C
    2019-06-08 05:36

    The poems are nice and it is wonderful to find a collection that is chosen for its recitative beauty, but I found it to be a pretty stagnant collection with little to offer outside of the standard white, western canon. It left me a little restless, even as I enjoyed the poems it does offer.

  • Ryan
    2019-06-19 06:32

    An excellent collection of poems short enough to memorize, flawed only by an attempt to give equal space to different poet forms. The collection of poems in the last section, classified as "meditations," far overshadows the earlier parts of the book.

  • Sara
    2019-06-14 05:33

    Some good names, some a little too well used. For Shakespeare and Hopkins, I would have picked other poems. Good Tennyson. Still a good read for those looking to expand their personal index of classical poetry.

  • Magila
    2019-06-13 05:36

    A great collection and way to get started into poetry. Yes, some of the poems are abridged. Yes, there is better poetry. However, for what this book is, it is a fairly excellent selection of poetry. Recommend.

  • Elise
    2019-06-19 00:50

    This is a really nice introduction to poetry for the true beginner. The poems are reasonably diverse, accessible and familiar enough to not be scarily deeeeeeeeeep and meeeeeeeeeaningful. Some of them are good for memorizing but not all. Viewer discretion is advised. But all are worth reading.

  • Jessica McCauley
    2019-06-23 02:25

    Sorry...but I simply do not agree with the choices of poems worth committing to memory. If I wish something to live inside my head and heart, I'd want it to at least be encouraging, challenging, uplifting or even cautionary. The choices here are not my cup of tea...

  • Amanda
    2019-06-12 03:37

    The only one I have actually committed to memory is At The Round Earth's Imagined Corners, but this is a nice collection of poetry. It really is good stuff to read aloud - and a good beginning collection for someone who wants to learn to like poetry.

  • Thomasin
    2019-06-18 02:42

    Some fine, solid poems here, several of which I would indeed like to commit to memory. (For those who complain about the solemnity of the poetry, remember it is a significant and complicated art form providing important political and historical commentary, not just a bunch of rhyming words!)

  • Kerri
    2019-05-30 23:43

    This is a great collection of poems, a lot of them well-known but also some I had never heard/read before. It has great variety, different types of poetry and a wide range of poets.

  • John Wharton
    2019-05-28 01:25

    I'll be honest; I wasn't able to memorize any of them!

  • Ethan
    2019-06-24 05:30


  • Noelle
    2019-05-27 00:45

    Even if you have no intention of memorizing, I would recommend this little collection for any poetry fan. Classics on classics on classics.

  • Mockingbird
    2019-06-10 03:50

    Be sure to read the introduction. John Hollander offers many gems of wisdom and understanding there.

  • Tina Bembry
    2019-05-30 22:47

    Very disappointing. It features mainly chopped versions of poems - not entire pieces - and includes many for no reason I could see. I'm not quite sure who would like this book...

  • Ronald
    2019-06-21 04:48

    left a lot of my favorites out. disappointing.