In honor of National Poetry Month in April, I posted a quiz on poetic first lines earlier this month. Here is another.
(If you’ve been following my Poem of the Day posts all month on my Facebook page or on Twitter, you should recognize several of these. All are worth reading. Or rereading!)
“Gather ye rose-buds while ye may,” wrote Robert Herrick, the 17th Century English poet, to open a poem encouraging ladies to marry while they were young and beautiful (“To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time”). This line of Herrick’s poem, which gained popularity as a song, is now an iconic admonition to enjoy our lives on Earth. Now gather ye wits, and see how many of these famous first lines you can identify.
1. Something there is that doesn’t love a wall
2. I, too, dislike it, there are things that are important beyond all this fiddle
3. Bent double, like old beggars under sacks
4. By the rude bridge that arched the flood
5. Come live with me and be my love
6. God moves in a mysterious way,
7. Hog Butcher for the World
8. Little Lamb, who made thee?
9. The art of losing isn’t hard to master.
The answers are below. This quiz was adapted from Don’t Know Much About Literature, written in collaboration with Jenny Davis.
1. Robert Frost, “Mending Wall”
2. Marianne Moore, “Poetry”
3. Wilfred Owen, “Dulce et Decorum Est”
4. Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Concord Hymn”
5. Christopher Marlowe, “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love”
6. William Cowper, “Light Shining Out of Darkness”
7. Carl Sandburg, “Chicago”
8. William Blake, “The Lamb”
9. Elizabeth Bishop, “One Art”