Selected by Dr Oliver Tearle
A lyric poem is a (usually short) poem detailing the thoughts or feelings of the poem’s speaker. Originally, lyric poems, as the name suggests, were sung and accompanied by the lyre, a stringed instrument not unlike a harp. Even today, we often use the term ‘lyricism’ to denote a certain harmony or musicality in poetry. Below, we introduce ten of the greatest short lyric poems written in English from the Middle Ages to the present day.