The great English poet William Wordsworth once called poetry “the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings.” It is not surprising, then, that many people use poetry to express their feelings about someone or to put into words the emotions they are experiencing. If you are missing someone -- because the person has moved away or passed away, or simply because you are no longer as close as you once were -- then sending a poem, reading a poem or even writing your own poem may help you to feel better about your experience.
If you are in love, you might miss your sweetheart even if you have been apart a very short time. The English Romantic poet John Keats was engaged to a woman named Fanny Brawne, and his poem “The day is gone, and all its sweets are gone!” is dedicated to her. The poem is about how much the poet misses his love, although he has seen her that very day. “I carry your heart with me” by U.S. poet e. e. cummings is a great poem to express that, although you are apart, you carry your affection and your love interest's with you at all times.
If you have broken up with someone, you may be feeling abandoned and alone. You might want to express that you still think of your one-time boyfriend or girlfriend but also that you are getting on with your life. Lisa Olstein’s “Dear One, Absent this Long While” tells how the poet thinks she sees her loved one in different places. It also relates how life has to go on despite the depth of feeling the poet has for the one she is missing.
Poems for Times of Grief
You may find yourself missing a person who has died. Many poets have written about the experience of losing someone close. Christina Rossetti’s “Remember” is often read at funerals. In this poem, the person who has died asks to be remembered but also gives comfort by reminding the mourner that in time the loved one will be remembered with a smile. Another well-known poem that may bring comfort if you are missing someone is Cannon Henry Scott-Holland’s “Death is nothing at all.” This poem seeks to remind the living to continue thinking of the individual lost, to talk about the loved one and to smile and laugh in remembrance.
In the article "Emotional and Physical Health Benefits of Expressive Writing" for "Advances in Psychiatric Treatment," Karen A. Baikie, a postdoctoral research fellow with the Black Dog Institute and School of Psychiatry at the University of New South Wales, and Kay Wilhelm, a consultant psychiatrist at St Vincent’s Hospital, say that writing about a traumatic or upsetting experience can help you feel better mentally and physically. Missing someone can be traumatic, especially if you are worried that you might not see that person again. Try setting aside some time each day to write down your feelings. Don’t worry about making what you write seem “poetic” at first. Return to your writing a few days, or even weeks, later and see if you can organize your thoughts and feelings into a poem. You may find that this helps you to deal with your emotions more than reading someone else’s words.