Having A Bad Day? Read These Poems
Young beautiful woman lying on sofa at home, drinking coffee and reading book in the evening.
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We all have them, maybe more often than we'd care to admit: bad days. And, personally, I hate them. I hate the temptation to mope; I hate the feelings of sadness or hopelessness that come crashing down like a tidal wave at the drop of a hat (or the drop of anything else — because who doesn't drop sh*t like crazy during a bad day?!). I could go on, but honestly that's just what bad days want you to do — indulge them. Pros at rebooting bad days know that playing nice just won't work.

You've got to get nasty.

Or, at least, inventive.

(Sometimes, of course, the two are synonymous.)

Believe it or not, reading poems can completely help combat a bad day. For lots of reasons. To begin, poems shake up your routine. They force you to read in a different way than the way your brain is probably used to. Remember that time you read a poem and you realized it didn't make "sense"? You were figuring out that it didn't make narrative sense, and frankly I think narrative is the true enemy of a good day.

The other thing poems have going for them in the beat-bad-day camp is their ability to make you smile. You don't have to read Shel Silverstein to cheer up, obviously, but who's really going to stop you if you do?

Not me.

Here are seven poems that never fail to cheer me up on a bad day:


'Happiness' by Noelle Kocot

Our ancestors in the earth are not
Ashamed of us. The strong smell
Of dirt, the delirious rabbits, the
Clocks are all disappearing.

Click here to read.


'The Daffodils' by William Wordsworth

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils
Click here to read.


'Their Secret Was' by Jalal al-Din Rumi

Their secret was this: That once every day, for
an hour, they treated each other as if they were
gods and would, with all their heart, do anything,
anything, their beloved desired.

Click here to read.


'Another of the Happiness Poems' by Peter Cooley

Look at your feet, now that your shoes are off.
You could be a duck,
no, duck-billed platypus,
your feet distraction from your ugly nose.

Click here to read.


'Darling Coffee' by Meena Alexander

The periodic pleasure
of small happenings
is upon us—

Click here to read.


'Slow Waltz Through Inflatable Landscape' by Christian Hawkey

It was a strange kiss. It was a beautiful kiss.
It seemed to last a long time.
It seemed to last a lifetime.

Click here to read.


7 'A List of Praises' by Anne Porter

Give praise with water,
With storms of rain and thunder
And the small rains that sparkle as they dry,
And the faint floating ocean roar
That fills the seaside villages,
And the clear brooks that travel down the mountains

Click here to read.