20 Poems About Self Love

by Anna Christopher

Many of us navigate through our lives with a harsh internal critic, our self-doubts and insecurities often drowning out the whisper of self-appreciation. poet Walt Whitman once said, “I celebrate myself and sing myself.” To truly love oneself is not only a pinnacle of emotional wellbeing but also a healing journey. A journey that resonates through the beauty of poetry.

In this article, we’ll be stepping into the magical world of poetry that champions self-love. These verses remind us that we are not alone in our struggles and possess a reservoir of strength and resilience, waiting to be discovered within our hearts. They invite us to celebrate every facet of our personality, even the quirky or imperfect parts.

1. “The Laughing Heart” by Charles Bukowski

“your life is your life

don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.

Be on the watch.”

2. “Love After Love” by Derek Walcott

“The time will come

when, with elation,

you will greet yourself arriving

at your own door, in your own mirror,

and each will smile at the other’s welcome.”

3. “Phenomenal Woman” by Maya Angelou

“It’s in the reach of my arms,

The span of my hips,

The stride of my step,

The curl of my lips.

I’m a woman


4. “Myself” by Edgar Guest

“Myself I have to live with myself, and so,

I want to be fit for myself to know;

I want to be able as days go by,

Always to look myself straight in the eye.”

5. “I Am Me” by Virginia Satir

“I own me, and therefore I can engineer me.

I am me and I am Okay.”

6. “Invictus” by William Ernest Henley

“I am the master of my fate,

I am the captain of my soul.”

7. “The Journey” by Mary Oliver

“But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own.”

8. “Wild Geese” by Mary Oliver

“Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,

the world offers itself to your imagination,

calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting

over and over announcing your place

in the family of things.”

9. “Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night” by Dylan Thomas

“Do not go gentle into that good night,

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;…”

10. “Stanzas” by Emily Bronte

“I’ll walk where my own nature would be leading;

It vexes me to choose another guide”

11. “The Man Who Thinks He Can” by Walter D. Wintle

“If you think you are beaten, you are;

If you think you dare not, you don’t!”

12. “A Dialogue between the Soul and Body” by Andrew Marvell

“Fate wings with ev’ry foot.”

13. “Burning the Old Year” by Naomi Shihab Nye

“So much of any year is flammable,

Lists of vegetables, partial poems.”

14. “Returning the Favour (A Comedy)” by Patricia Lockwood

“Myself to myself, is kind.”

15. “Living” by Denise Levertov

“Being, not doing, is my first joy.”

16. “A Song for Occupations” by Walt Whitman

“I introduce that new American word: Selfesteemer.”

17. “Advice to Myself” by Louise Erdrich

“Every morning, the world is created.

Under the orange

sticks of the sun

the heaped

ashes of the night

turn into leaves again.”

18. “A Supermarket in California” by Allen Ginsberg

“What thoughts I have of you tonight, Walt Whit-


I wandered in and out of the brilliant


of cans.”

19. “Song of the Open Road” by Walt Whitman

“All parts away for the progress of souls,

All religion, all solid things, arts, governments — all

that was or is apparent upon this globe or any globe,

falls into niches and corners before the procession of

souls along the grand roads of the universe.”

20. “Still I Rise” by Maya Angelou

“Just like moons and like suns,

With the certainty of tides,

Just like hopes springing high,

Still I’ll rise.”

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