The Sound of Poetry

When I was a child, my father read poetry to me often. He quoted lines of poetry whenever it was brought to his mind. He sang little ditties that he learned as a child. He filled my life with the rhythm of poetry. One of the first poems I memorized was -

Boy with bow and arrow, photograph by Doris Ulmann - LoC 3b16179u

"The Arrow and the Song" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
I shot an arrow into the air,
It fell to earth, I knew not where;
For, so swiftly it flew, the sight
Could not follow it in its flight. 

I breathed a song into the air,
It fell to earth, I knew not where;
For who has sight so keen and strong,
That it can follow the flight of song? 

Long, long afterward, in an oak
I found the arrow, still unbroke;
And the song, from beginning to end,
I found again in the heart of a friend.

I love the meaning of the words. I loved the flow of their sounds. I found that I liked other poems by Longfellow - "The Song of Hiawatha" and "The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere." I was thrilled to learn that he was a Maine native.

Who is your favorite poet?

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