25+ Short & Sweet Inspirational Poems About Love And Life

Poetry is more than just words. It’s art, a form of expression, and a rhythmic way of communication. So, here’s a list of the best inspirational poems for encouraging you to be better for yourself and stand up for yourself in difficult times. A good poem can make anyone laugh, think, inspire, or act as a source of motivation. The thoughtful poetic words and heart-touching metaphors of these poems will be uplifting for your heart and brain.

In This Article

25+ Inspirational Poems

Short Inspiring Poems

Soulful poems bring an affirmative vibe and give strength to overcome problems. Here are a few short verses that are heartening for us in many ways.

1. Move Past This

When you are feeling down
And all you can muster up is a frown
That is the time to stop
And count your blessings until you drop.

Focus on all of life’s good
And you will find things work out as they should
Feeling sorry and just sitting around
It is a sure thing to bring you down.

Take some action, make a move.
It doesn’t matter if others approve.
Nothing lasts forever
You will move past this if you endeavor!

—Catherine Pulsifer

2. Hope Is A Thing With Feathers

“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –

And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –

I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
It asked a crumb – of me.

—Emily Dickinson, poetryfoundation.org

3. I’m busy

I’m busy connecting with the natural world.

Image: IStock

I’m busy;
but not in the way
most people accept.
I’m busy calming my fear
and finding my courage.
I’m busy listening to my kids.
I’m busy getting in touch
with what is real.
I’m busy growing things and
connecting with the natural world.
I’m busy questioning my answers.
I’m busy being present in my life.

—Brooke Hampton

4. Invictus

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul.

—William Ernest Henley, poetryfoundation.org

5. Keep Going

When failures come – keep going.
When you feel like giving up – keep going
When people mock your idea – keep going
When challenges you face – keep going
When mistakes are made, learn – but keep going
Because perseverance just keeps going!

—Kate Summers

6. Dreams

Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.

Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.

—Langston Hughes, poets.org

Inspiring Poems About Women

Women play several roles effortlessly with a tremendous amount of grit and determination. They never fail to inspire everyone around them. Their invigorating spirit acts as a stimulating agent for empowerment.

7. Being Independent 

The two of us combined could set it on fire.

Image: IStock

I do not want to have you
To fill the empty parts of me.
I want to be full on my own.
I want to be so complete.
I could light a whole city
And then
I want to have you
Cause the two of us combined
Could set it on fire.

—Rupi Kaur

8. Still I Rise

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
’Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

—Maya Angelou, poetryfoundation.org

9. Love

In love’s embrace, we find our way,
Through life’s ups and night’s dark sway.
With hearts aglow, we rise above,
In love and life, we find our love.

—Unknown

10. Untitled

A woman with a book
And a pen
Has the power
To move nations.

A woman with a mind
And a voice
Has the power
To change worlds.

—Sasha Temerte

11. Mothers

The last time I was home
to see my mother, we kissed
exchanged pleasantries
and un pleasantries pulled a warm
comforting silence around
us and read separate books

I remember the first time
I consciously saw her
we were living in a three-room
apartment on burns avenue

mommy always sat in the dark
I don’t know how I knew that, but she did

that night I stumbled into the kitchen
maybe because I’ve always been
a night person or perhaps because I had wet
the bed
she was sitting on a chair
the room was bathed in moonlight diffused through
those thousands of panes landlords who rented
to people with children were prone to put in windows
she may have been smoking, but maybe not
her hair was three-quarters her height
which made me a strong believer in the Samson myth
and very black

I’m sure I just hung there by the door
I remember thinking: what a beautiful lady

she was very deliberately waiting
perhaps for my father to come home
from his night job or maybe for a dream
that had promised to come by
“come here,” she said, “I’ll teach you
a poem: I see the moon
the moon sees me
God bless the moon
and god bless me.”
I taught it to my son
who recited it for her
just to say we must learn
to bear the pleasures
as we have borne the pains

—Nikki Giovanni

12. There’s Wisdom In Women

‘Oh love is fair, and love is rare;’ my dear one she said,
‘But love goes lightly over.’ I bowed her foolish head,
And kissed her hair and laughed at her. Such a child was she;
So new to love, so true to love, and she spoke so bitterly.

But there’s wisdom in women, of more than they have known,
And thoughts go blowing through them, are wiser than their own,
Or how should my dear one, being ignorant and young,
Have cried on love so bitterly, with so true a tongue?

—Rupert Brooke, rupertbrooke.com

Inspiring Poems About Men

A dad, son, brother, and husband—a man plays many roles in his life too. These rhapsodic poems about them are an inspiration.

13. Ulysses

Strong will to to seek, to find.

Image: IStock

It little profits that an idle king,
By this still hearth, among these barren crags,
Match’d with an aged wife, I mete and dole
Unequal laws unto a savage race,
That hoard, and sleep, and feed, and know not me.
I cannot rest from travel: I will drink
Life to the lees: All times I have enjoy’d
Greatly, have suffer’d greatly, both with those
That loved me, and alone, on shore, and when
Thro’ scudding drifts the rainy Hyades
Vext the dim sea: I am become a name;
For always roaming with a hungry heart
Much have I seen and known; cities of men
And manners, climates, councils, governments,
Myself not least, but honour’d of them all;
And drunk delight of battle with my peers,
Far on the ringing plains of windy Troy.
I am a part of all that I have met;
Yet all experience is an arch wherethro.’
Gleams that untravell’d world whose margin fades
Forever and forever when I move.
How dull it is to pause, to make an end,
To rust unburnish’d, not to shine in use!
As tho’ to breathe were life! Life piled on life
Were all too little, and of one to me
Little remains: but every hour is saved
From that eternal silence, something more,
A bringer of new things; and vile it were
For some three suns to store and hoard myself,
And this gray spirit yearning in desire
To follow knowledge like a sinking star,
Beyond the utmost bound of human thought.

This is my son, mine own Telemachus,
To whom I leave the sceptre and the isle—
Well-loved of me, discerning to fulfill
This labour, by slow prudence, to make mild
A rugged people, and thro’ soft degrees
Subdue them to the useful and the good.
Most blameless is he, centered in the sphere
Of common duties, decent not to fail
In offices of tenderness, and pay
Meet adoration to my household gods,
When I am gone. He works his work, I mine.

There lies the port; the vessel puffs her sail:
There gloom the dark, broad seas. My mariners,
Souls that have toil’d, and wrought, and thought with me—
That ever with a frolic welcome took
The thunder and the sunshine, and opposed
Free hearts, free foreheads—you and I are old;
Old age hath yet his honour and his toil;
Death closes all: but something ere the end,
Some work of noble note may yet be done,
Not unbecoming men that strove with Gods.
The lights begin to twinkle from the rocks:
The long day wanes: the slow moon climbs: the deep
Moans round with many voices. Come, my friends,
‘T is not too late to seek a newer world.
Push off and sitting well in order smite
The sounding furrows; for my purpose, holds
To sail beyond the sunset and the baths
Of all the western stars, until I die.
It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:
It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,
And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.
Tho’ much is taken, much abides; and tho’
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.

—Alfred Lord Tennyson

14. Character Of A Happy Warrior

Who is the happy Warrior? Who is he
That every man in arms should wish to be?
—It is the generous Spirit, who, when brought
Among the tasks of real life, hath wrought
Upon the plan that pleased his boyish thought:
Whose high endeavours are an inward light
That makes the path before him always bright;
Who, with a natural instinct to discern
What knowledge can perform, is diligent to learn;
Abides by this resolve, and stops not there,
But makes his moral being his prime care;
Who, doomed to go in company with Pain,
And Fear, and Bloodshed, miserable train!
Turns his necessity to glorious gain;
In face of these doth exercise a power
Which is our human nature’s highest dower:
Controls them and subdues, transmutes, bereaves
Of their bad influence, and their good receives:
By objects, which might force the soul to abate
Her feeling, rendered more compassionate;
Is placable—because occasions rise
So often that demand such sacrifice;
More skilful in self-knowledge, even more pure,
As tempted more; more able to endure,
As more exposed to suffering and distress;
Thence, also, more alive to tenderness.

—William Wordsworth, poetryfoundation.org

15. The Charge of the Light Brigade

I
Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
“Forward, the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns!” he said.
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.

II
“Forward, the Light Brigade!”
Was there a man dismayed?
Not though the soldier knew
Someone had blundered.
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die.
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.

III
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volleyed and thundered;
Stormed at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of hell
Rode the six hundred.

IV
Flashed all their sabres bare,
Flashed as they turned in air
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army while
All the world wondered.
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right through the line, they broke;
Cossack and Russian
Reeled from the sabre stroke
Shattered and sundered.
Then they rode back, but not
Not the six hundred.

V
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
Volleyed and thundered;
Stormed at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell.
They that had fought so well
Came through the jaws of Death,
Back from the mouth of hell,
All that was left of them,
Left of six hundred.

VI
When can their glory fade?
O, the wild charge they made!
All the world wondered.
Honour the charge they made!
Honour the Light Brigade,
Noble six hundred!

—Alfred Lord Tennyson

16. Desiderata

Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.

Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

—Max Ehrmann

17. Sonnet 7: How Soon Hath Time , The Subtle Thief Of Youth

How soon hath Time, the subtle thief of youth,
Stol’n on his wing my three-and-twentieth year!
My hasting days fly on with full career,
But my late spring no bud or blossom shew’th.
Perhaps my semblance might deceive the truth
That I to manhood am arriv’d so near;
And inward ripeness doth much less appear,
That some more timely-happy spirits endu’th.
Yet be it less or more, or soon or slow,
It shall be still in strictest measure ev’n
To that same lot, however, mean or high,
Toward which Time leads me, and the will of Heav’n:
All is if I have grace to use it so
As ever in my great Task-Master’s eye.

—John Milton

18. How Did You Die?

Did you tackle that trouble that came your way
With a resolute heart and cheerful?
Or hide your face from the light of day
With a craven soul and fearful?
Oh, a trouble’s a ton, or a trouble’s an ounce,
Or a trouble is what you make it,
And it isn’t the fact that you’re hurt that counts,
But only how did you take it?
You are beaten to earth? Well, well, what’s that?
Come up with a smiling face.
It’s nothing against you to fall down flat,
But to lie there — that’s disgrace.
The harder you’re thrown, why the higher you bounce;
Be proud of your blackened eye!
It isn’t the fact that you’re licked that counts,
It’s how did you fight — and why?
And though you be done to the death, what then?
If you battled the best you could,
If you played your part in the world of men,
Why, the Critic will call it good.
Death comes with a crawl, or comes with a pounce,
And whether he’s slow or spry,
It isn’t the fact that you’re dead that counts,
But only how did you die?
—Edmund Vance Cooke

Inspirational Poems About Love

 Love, too, needs the inspiration to bring the best out of you. When you love someone from your heart, it motivates you. So here, let’s know about a few inspirational poems about love.

19. Love, Love, Love, Love, Love Without A Doubt

Love is what counts.

Image: IStock

How do you write a poem
about Love?
It cannot be caught
and is beyond words’
power of depiction.
It has no place to be,
all places are filled
with Love.
Without Love would
anything have any savour?

Love is what joins
Love is what flows
Love is what counts
Love is what grows
Love is what’s known.

Love is all around
Love is all about
Love is all we ask

Love is all we give
Love is all I have.

Love wants nothing
Love needs nothing
Love misses nothing
Love excludes nothing
Love is what this is all about.

Joining, flowing, counting,
growing, knowing
around, about
asking, giving, having
All is Love,
of that I have no doubt.

—David Taylor

20. All I Need

I cannot preach with featherlight tongue,
Of the things I haven’t lived. I lack the
Wisdom and experience, that only the years
And life, can teach. I lack self-direction;
I cannot show you the ways of life. I dissolve
In thousands of moons, in the corner
Of longing I sit every night.

But in this world full of wonders. One heart
Is all I need; which I hold. To love and to be
Loved.

—Clairel Estevez

21. Life Is Love, And Love Is Life

life is life; however it would go
love is love, no matter what would occur
love is growing more with every hearts beat
feelings of my heart could never change
love is life, life is love
you can enjoy them as much as you want….

—Anna Jonson

22. Love, Love, Love – Thank God

 Love, love, love…
Thanks goes to the all mighty one from up above.
You’ve brought my mate just to my side…
You’ve led the spiritual path for your son’s holy guided stride.
He gave up his life for your good; holy loved, wide spread word…
Many people were forgiven,
of this fact forgiven ex-sinners have world widely heard.
Fate united me to my bride…
Cupid’s arrow gave me such a wonderful wild, crazy ride.
Thank God…

Amen!

—Michael Gale

Inspirational Poems About Family

 Our world revolves around our family. Our family inspires us to put our best foot forward, move on in life, and face any difficulty with courage.

23. Look At Your Loved Ones

When family are gathered ’round
There’s so much love in the air.
If you ever wonder who has your back,
Just look at your loved ones there.

—Kelly Roper

24. Family Means Different Things

Family means different things to different people.

To some, family means mom, dad, and the kids.
To others, family means single parents doing the job of two to make a home.
To some, family means living with grandparents too.
To others, family is the aunt or uncle who has stepped up to fill in for parents.
To some, family means two moms or two dads growing a family together.
To others, family means two people multiplying their love through adoption.
To some, family is limited to blood relations.
To others, family includes friends who are there through thick and thin.
To some, family is all about the people in their lives.
To others, pets are considered family members too.

Yes, family means different things to different people,
But every family has one thing in common, and that’s love.

—Kelly Roper

Poems About Encouragement

Poems provide us silent words of wisdom and are a great source of motivation. These encouragement poem scan become an instrument to soothe us and move on in life.

25. Life Doesn’t Frighten Me At All

Shadows on the wall
Noises down the hall
Life doesn’t frighten me at all

Bad dogs barking loud
Big ghosts in a cloud
Life doesn’t frighten me at all

Mean old Mother Goose
Lions on the loose
They don’t frighten me at all

Dragons breathing flame
On my counterpane
That doesn’t frighten me at all.

I go boo
Make them shoo
I make fun
Way they run
I won’t cry
So they fly
I just smile
They go wild

Life doesn’t frighten me at all.

Tough guys fight
All alone at night
Life doesn’t frighten me at all.

Panthers in the park
Strangers in the dark
No, they don’t frighten me at all.

That new classroom where
Boys all pull my hair
(Kissy little girls
With their hair in curls)
They don’t frighten me at all.

Don’t show me frogs and snakes
And listen for my scream,
If I’m afraid at all
It’s only in my dreams.

I’ve got a magic charm
That I keep up my sleeve
I can walk the ocean floor
And never have to breathe.

Life doesn’t frighten me at all
Not at all
Not at all.

Life doesn’t frighten me at all.

—Maya Angelou

26. One

One thing can change the world.

One song can spark a moment,
One flower can wake the dream;
One tree can start a forest,
One bird can herald Spring.

One smile can bring a friendship,
One handclasp can lift a soul;
One star can guide a ship at sea,
One cheer can obtain a goal.

One vote can change a Nation,
One sunbeam can lift a room;
One candle wipes out darkness,
One laugh will conquer gloom.
One look can change two lives;
One kiss can make love bloom.

One step must start each journey,
One word must start each prayer;
One hope can raise our spirits,
One-touch can show you care.

One voice can speak with wisdom,
One heart can know what’s true;
One life can make a difference,
One life is me and you….

—Shivam Suchak

Note: The poems in this collection are not original works of MomJunction but have been sourced from various authors. No claim of ownership is being made by us. Credit has been given wherever the details were available. If you are the original author of any poem and wish to have it credited or removed, please contact us. We value the creative rights of authors and will address your request promptly.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can inspirational poetry be used for self-improvement or personal growth?

Inspirational poetry conveys powerful messages and ideas to rouse us to make positive life changes. Poems based on perseverance and resilience may encourage us to face our challenges, cheering you on in a buoyant manner. Some may inspire creativity and self-expression, providing new ways to elevate ourselves and connecting with others.

2. What makes a poem timeless and universally inspiring?

A timeless and universally inspiring poem includes people’s experiences across cultures, languages, and generations. They usually appeal to the deepest human emotions that remain relevant across time and place.

3. Can I write my own inspirational poem?

Writing your inspirational poem can be a wonderful and creative endeavor as it allows you to express your thoughts, emotions, experiences, and ideas uniquely and creatively. For this, you need to choose the message you want to convey to your readers and the tone that will shape the poem’s mood. Take time to jot down ideas, feelings, and phrases related to your chosen theme and decide on its structure. Pay attention to your words’ flow, rhythm, and clarity, and share it with others once done.

4. What are some common themes in inspirational poems?

Inspirational poems often explore themes that evoke positive emotions like hope, optimism, personal growth, the beauty of nature, love, perseverance, determination, gratitude, and appreciation that provide encouragement and offer guidance or reflection on the human experience.

5. Can inspirational poems be used in therapy or counseling?

Inspirational poems can be used in therapy or counseling as a therapeutic tool. Therapists can use these poems to facilitate discussions around themes and metaphors present in the poetry. Inspirational poems can serve as reminders of resilience, personal growth, and the possibility of positive change and can help uplift and inspire clients, offering them a fresh perspective, hope, and encouragement during challenging times.

Good lyrical poetry has the unique capacity to be interpreted in several ways based on the reader’s perspective and frame of mind. It can inspire you to have a hopeful outlook on life and change your approach to family, love, and the people around you. Send these inspiring poems to someone in grave need of encouragement and a thrust in the right direction. You could also read them to your children and help them in expressing their perspectives on life and love.

Infographic: Poets And Their Inspirational Work

Poems can take you to a whole new world. Poems ease your pain, fill you with joy, inspire and motivate you, and sometimes make you nostalgic. Check out this infographic for some of the best poems by famous poets and get inspired.

poets and their inspirational work (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team

Get high-quality PDF version by clicking below.

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Download Infographic in PDF version

Embark on an inspirational journey filled with courage and wisdom and be inspired by this classic poem by Rudyard Kipling. This video says it all!

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