Top 10

What are the world’s most popular poems? Always a topic for debate among poetry lovers, and one that mostly raises as many questions as answers.

We’ll be using this page to offer a series of playlists from our library, and would love to hear from you about your favourites too. E-mail us your top 10 Classic Poetry Aloud recordings at classicpoetryaloud [at]

To start the ball rolling, here are our top 10 downloads to date:

  1. She Walks in Beauty by Lord Byron
  2. Ode to Autumn by John Keats
  3. If by Rudyard Kipling
  4. Sonnet 18: Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer’s Day? by William Shakespeare
  5. Kubla Khan by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  6. How Do I Love Thee? by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  7. O Captain! My Captain! by Walt Whitman
  8. Ozymandias by Percy Bysshe Shelley
  9. Death by John Donne
  10. Ode on a Grecian Urn by John Keats

101 responses to “Top 10

  1. that’s awesome πŸ™‚
    superb πŸ˜›

  2. I was able to find good information from your
    blog posts. pr3sp4birlik
    Regards – Casino

  3. i am very happy by reading this because its true i like it i love it

  4. it

  5. nic infact really nic collection…of poems ….. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  6. well done!!!!!!!!!!!!!!nice work!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I like this site sooooooooooo much

  7. Ahaa, its good discussion on the topic of this article at this place
    at this webpage, I have read all that, so at this time
    me also commenting here.

  8. I love the poetry and the voice of the person took me into a different world.The poem “She walks in the beauty” is awesome.The others are also very good.Thank you for such a lovely poetry.

  9. You should take part in a contest for one of the best blogs on the internet.
    I will highly recommend this site!

  10. shakespeare a great poet

  11. Greetings! I’ve been reading your blog for some time now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from Dallas Texas! Just wanted to tell you keep up the good work!

  12. Poetry is like a food for gives great pleasure to the poet. . Its the best thing in the world.:)

  13. Moroesi Junior

    Lovely poetry true beauty

  14. Moroesi Junior

    Lovely poetry

  15. Very beautiful poems.They are very interesting.I just have to say good work,It is pure beauty.I wish peole were more interesting in things like that.By the way my name is Mariane and am 13 years-old.Thank you.u

  16. Very beautiful poems.They are very interesting.I just have to say good work,It is pure beauty.I wish peole were more interesting in things like that.By the way my name is Mariane and am 13 years-old.Thank you.


    this site provides up to date information which my students really need in their studies!may you add some of the famous Filipino poets….thanks.SIR JB from ILOILO, Phlippines

  18. i have never read such a wonderful, poem it’s great

  19. i love this site and the poems in it

  20. real nice post, just loved all the poems

  21. It’s Amazing Reading!!!
    Thanks a lot ..i used these poems for My English Recitation!!!

  22. Wow! This is nice. I really love ‘eating’ poems, infact, they add nutrients to my mind. Thanks guys for these nice ‘cookies’.

  23. These poets are very wonderful. I like their poeatry

  24. It is an awesome site.All the poems r amazing nd i love 2 visit on this site.Thanks 2 this site.I Specially liked the wordings of John Keats.I would again thank 4 this wonderful site.

  25. I’d like to hear you read some of Hone Tuwhare’s poems, I think your rich voice would be ideal to capture some of the essential melancholy of his words.

  26. superb.. awesome.. its really great..

  27. Barry Loakman.

    Ellergy written in a Country Churchyard, should be included.Grays famous
    poem has been lauded by many.

  28. Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
    Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

    It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
    We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
    gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous?

    Actually, who are you not to be?
    You are a child of God.

    Your playing small does not serve the world.
    There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
    so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
    We are all meant to shine, as children do.

    We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
    It is not just in some; it is in everyone.

    And, as we let our own light shine, we consciously give
    other people permission to do the same.
    As we are liberated from our fear,
    our presence automatically liberates others.

  29. Pingback: Reading Is Magical

  30. Thanks so Much.
    I am a student and this really helped my with my work, and i got a high level from the resources on this website

    Thanks once again

  31. What is the best poem by Robert frost?

  32. I love all these poems…


  34. i’ve no words to praise these 10 english poems,its worth praising


  36. I love the read, however I would like to say that you may also consider including in your list one great poet of his time, the legend out of his own legacy. The sufferer and the mystic, the one lost in commercial resonance silently lying besides the Auguries of Innocence: William Blake.

    & Sir, I am sure the audience wouldn’t mind an 11th entry, symmetry is too common these days!

  37. wow!!!! very interesting…. πŸ˜€

  38. thank u for this website ,it is absolutely amazing! im very happy to meet these poems.thank u for the occasion u give us,i m student but i only read it to find different poems event,and enjoy.

  39. good poems thanks

  40. Please find a place for ‘Stopping by the Woods On a Snowy Evening’ – Robert Frost.

  41. Hi…. I m a high school student. English literature has always been my dream… I wntd 2 become a writer bt my parents r against it…. Our teachers also dont teach literature… Only grammar… I just want 2 say that this site has made my dream a reality… Whenever i feel lonely, these poems befriend me……. Thanks a lot 4m the core of my heart

  42. Isaiah Alexander Burner

    What an amazingly, intricate way to modernly ease that which is classic poetry into the minds of the unknowing and also provide for the long awaited as well. Splendid Job! Well, done! Also, the gentleman who does the readings portrays the feelings and attributes of the poets very well. If I do say so myself.

  43. Shanna VanNorman

    love these — thanks for sharing.

    I especially love, How Do I love thee? by Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806–1861)

    What a beautiful, classic poem.



  44. Enjoyed this website, these poems are reminiscent of the days I studied English Literature in the Caribbean.

  45. Frank Stephen T. Balbanera

    wow! nice post,]

  46. Classic Poetry Aloud has filled the emptiness I felt ever since I finished my BA as an English literature student and started my own business. Thank you.

  47. She walks in Beauty is the most beautiful poem that I had ever read !!!!

  48. I really love your voice, and the way you are reading poems!!! it`s wonderful!!! thank you!!!

  49. Love this site. Poems here are read with gentle care and great musicality. Thanks so much for making the beauty alive!

  50. I love this website! My students just had a poetry slam and listening to the poems on this website has been a tremendous help. The poems are read with the emotion the poets intended. Thank you!!!

  51. the nicest poem is shall i compare thee to a summer’s day maybe it has a very hard language for the people whose there real language isn’t English but it is amazing

  52. Thanks…but isn’t ode to Autumn a poem by P.B. Shelley? thanks.

  53. In one of my classical literature classes we read a poem about this old man lamenting the lack of virtue and wishing for the return of chivalry and when knights had honor…then in the end you find out he is nothing else but a drunk. Does anyone know the name or who wrote it?

  54. It’s a delightful site and, like everyone else who visits, I wish the selection were greater. If our anonymous benefactor would enable visitors to suggest poems on line and if subsequent visitors supported those suggestions, it might be a nice guide to expand the website’s content. Good luck!

  55. Wow great job keep up the good work!

  56. Thank you for these readings!
    The poems chosen are sublime and the marriage of your mellifluous voice and their subject matter elevates each poem to a higher level of enjoyment.

    May I put in a humble request for “The Singers” by Longfellow?

    All the best!

  57. gibi
    thanks for such a lovely site. rightly put the poem is all that matters.its great help but if you also give some tip to the age group each falls it will be a great help and time saving while preparing for recitations for childrens and adults. thanks also for the joy and feelings the site evokes. good reading.
    thanks and god bless

  58. Hey,

    I am loving this podcast, as I see, many others do as well.

    I was hoping perhaps you could read The Bells, by Poe. It has long been one of my favorites.

    Keep up the great work.

  59. By breathing a new life into the art of poetry i thank you.

    William Blake’s The Tyger is something i would love to request.

  60. hey this is a awesome site, ive always tried to read poetry but woulnd proceed more than a few lines as wouls get bored. but this read aloud thing is great , i feel like soeone is actually sitting next to me and reading out these beatiful poems. thanks a lot

  61. thx for sharing,it’s just beautiful

  62. Hello!
    Very Interesting post! Thank you for such interesting resource!
    PS: Sorry for my bad english, I’v just started to learn this language πŸ˜‰
    See you!
    Your, Raiul Baztepo

  63. I’m currently downloading lots of poems to help me with my English A level. Thanks SO much.

  64. I have been a iTunes subcriber to your podcast, to keep my daily noises to the pure joy that your voice gives me, as the poems come to life in a wonderful way. Currently I am writing an essay on Romanticism, and it does help me to analyze them, as I listen to the poems. However my bfriend gave me a Zune for the holidays and I have a hard time, to transfer the podcast subscription there. Could you help me? are considering to put up a link to zune?

    • Hi Brigitta

      Many thanks for the kind comments on the podcasts, and apologies for my delay in replying.

      I have been exploring getting Classic Poetry Aloud set up for the Zune, but as the device is not released in the UK, this is making testing a little difficult. Your message, however, gives me a new sense of impetus, and I will get back to work on putting the readings on to Zune.

      Best wishes

      Classic Poetry Aloud

  65. Many thanks for replying my e-mails. It’s really pleasant to know that there is someone else out there other than us, teachers, who think students are the top priority. I’m looking forward to laying my hands on the latest recordings. I’m pretty sure my students of literature will make the most of them. Thanks again.


  66. Kevin C. Fleming

    I am dyslexic and I have a lot of trouble reading. This site has helped me gain an understanding of poetry that I never thought I would get. Thanks for doing it!
    Also, I was wondering if the reader uses a laptop to record himself? I am a very good listener and it seems that at the end of each recording I hear a click as if someone has just hit the space bar to stop recording. This happens to me all the time. I’m not saying that it is a big deal or anything. I was just wondering.
    Oh and I would love to hear “Evangeline” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow if at all possible? If not that’s fine but I just thought I’d ask.

  67. classicpoetrylover

    what a wonderful site. another great way for me to enjoy classic poetry.

  68. great work

    thanx a ton(s)

  69. I am a beginner poet and subscribe to every poetry podcast on the net. Yours is the only one I listen to every night. Your presentations are flawless, especially your ability to capture and maintain the tone of the poem. You truly keep these poems and poets alive.
    If I ever achieve anything in this art form I will owe some of it to you, my anonymous mentor.

  70. I came by this recordings through iTunes…
    so happy there is someone who spends time and care to produce such things.

    Thank you for the occasions you give us, to re-discover what ought to be ours!

  71. Steven – I will add Desiderata to the list of requests.
    Larry – you asked for some Yeats. There will be some Yeats when he comes out of copyright in 2009.

  72. Me about something by WB YEATS?,our greatest irish poet.

  73. brillant,hit on the site by chance.youve kept me up late.!Will return again and again..Many thanks..

  74. How about reading Desiderata?

  75. Claudette, Carl and Joey: – thank you for your very kind comments.

    Claudette, I am delighted to hear that your 8 year-old likes listening to poetry. So many children do. It’s a pity that (as Carl observes) a formal approach can stifle that enthusiasm.

    Yes, we will have more Lawrence in the future and Joey, you can expect some more Poe.

  76. Thank you for this website, it is absolutely amazing! I absolutely love in particular the reading of Annabel Lee

  77. More praise. Your blend of well-known and not so well-known is wonderful. I loved poetry until I studied it in college; thank you for making me love it again. You have enriched my life.

  78. Thank you so much for your poetry. My 8 year old loves to listen to you. I have been waiting for more D.H.Lawrence though. I was wondering if you could read some more of him, like “Self Pity”? Thank you again for your work.

  79. Txabi and Petrina – thank you for your kind words. This sort of support really makes the whole Classic Poetry Aloud project worthwhile.

  80. Great readings and poems!!

  81. I haven’t heard someone read poetry so well since I finished university; thanks so much for sharing this with all of us.

  82. Many thanks everyone for your kind comments. I hope that future readings will continue to provide what you are looking for.

  83. What a fantastic idea. Whilst one can gain a lot through reading poetry, it always brings, for me, an additional element to hear it out loud.

    I can and will recommend this site to others – keep up the good work!

  84. As an English teacher, I really appreciate this site. It gives the students I teach a location where they can hear the words with great care and emotion.
    Thanks and keep it up!

  85. I am so grateful you take the time to produce this wonderful podcast. I enjoy poetry and your selection has exposed me to “new” poems and poets I now love. Of course you read it so well. I look forward to listening regularly.

  86. Kirstie, you are too kind. It is the poetry that matters. I only read it.

  87. I love the voice of the man who reads the poetry, it is pure beauty. :]

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