Poems of Alfred Lord Tennyson
Lord Tennyson was a more complex writer than his
status as Queen Victoria’s favorite poet might
suggest. Though capable of rendering rapture and
delight in the most exquisite verse, in another mode
Tennyson is brother in spirit to Poe and to
Baudelaire, the author of dark, passionate reveries.
And though he treasured poetic tradition, his work
nevertheless engaged directly with the great issues
of his time, from industrialization and the crisis
of faith to scientific progress and women’s rights.
A master of the short, intense lyric, he can also be
sardonic, humorous, voluptuous, earthy, and
This collection includes, of course, such celebrated
poems as “The Lady of Shalott” and “The Charge of
the Light Brigade.” There are extracts from all the
major masterpieces—“Idylls of the King,” “The
Princess,” “In Memoriam”—and several complete long
poems, such as “Ulysses” and “Demeter and
Persephone,” that demonstrate his narrative grace.
Finally, there are many of the short lyrical poems,
such as “Come into the Garden, Maud” and “Break,
Break, Break,” for which he is justly celebrated.