A Huge List of Common Poetry Themes (Poem Theme Ideas & Examples)

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The theme of a poem delivers the reader an underlying message which the writer wishes to conveys through their work of poetry.

A poem can contain a single or multiple themes based on the story of the poem which it tells. The theme is an important part of any work of poetry or literature as it provides meaning to the story.

Follow the below list to learn different types of themes found in poetry or use them as poem themes ideas for your next poetry.

Related: Examples of Meters in Poetry

Poetry Themes Examples

Most of the themes in poetry are often similar to themes of literature but yet some themes fit well only for poetry.

Below are the examples of common themes found in poetry.

#1 Love

#2 War

#3 Death

#4 Nature

#5 Beauty

#6 Aging

#7 Desire

#8 Dreams

#9 Coming of age

#10 Destiny

#11 Depression

#12 Courage

#13 Spirituality

#14 Happiness

#15 God

#16 Friendship

#17 Heartbreak

#18 Imagination

#19 Loss/tragedy

#20 Memories

#21 Mortality

#22 Immortality

#23 Marriage

#24 Rebirth

#25 Seasons

#26 Sexuality

#27 Religion

#28 Secrets

#29 Man and nature

#30 Peace

#31 Pain

#32 Isolation

#33 Eternity

#34 Earth

#35 Emotions

#36 Faith

#37 Fear

#38 Grief

#39 Forgiveness

#40 Hatred

#41 Afterlife

#42 Myth

#43 Art

#44 Anxiety

#45 Defeat

#46 Heaven

#47 Suffering

#48 Joy

#49 Life

#50 Disappointment

#51 Stars

#52 Trust

#53 Gender

#54 History

#55 Identity

#56 Purpose

#57 Regret

#58 Encouraging

#59 Opportunity

#60 Music

#61 Roses

#62 Innocence

#63 Moon

#64 Mountains

#65 Jealousy

#66 Duty and responsibility

#67 Supernatural

#68 Circle of life

#69 Man and masculinity

#70 Sunshine

#71 Change

#72 Flowers

Related: Consonance in Poetry (Examples and Definition)

examples of themes in poetry
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Examples of Themes in Poetry

Below are the examples of themes in poetry from popular poems of all time.

#1 The Waste Land 

By T. S Eliot

the wasteland poem theme

Major themes- Love, death, rebirth, history, lust/sexuality, water, religion, seasons.

Read the poem here


#2 Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

By Robert Frost

stopping the woods on a snowy evening poem themes

Major themes- Beauty, man and nature, desire, obligation, secrets, duty and responsibility, isolation.

Read the poem here

#3  Daddy

By Sylvia Plath

sylvia plath daddy themes

Major themes-  Death, gender, oppression, power, history, myth, hatred.

Read the poem here

#4 The Raven

By Egdar Allan Poe

the raven edgar allan poe poem themes

Major themes- Death, afterlife, memory, loss, supernatural, grief, madness, despair. 

Read the poem here

#5 The Second Coming 

By W.B Yeats

the second coming poem themes

Major Themes- Violence, prophecy, meaninglessness, christianity, cyclicality.

Read the poem here

#6  Because I could not Stop for Death

By Emily Dickinson

because i could not stop for death poem themes

Major Themes- Life and death, mortality, immortality, eternity.

Read the poem here

#7 The Road not Taken

By Robert Frost

the road not take poem themes

Major Themes- Choices, uncertainty, man and nature, indecision, individualism and nonconformity.

Read the poem here

#8 The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock 

By T.S Eliot

the love song of j alfred prufrock poem themes

Major themes- Love, anxiety, indecision, alienation, isolation, desire, modernity, disappointment, manipulation, time, aging, appearances. 

Read the poem here

#9 If

By Rudyard Kipeling

rudyard kipling poem if themes

Major Themes- Manhood, courage, man and masculinity, stoicism, defeat.

Read the poem here

#10 Ode to a nightingale

By John keats 

ode to the nightangle poem themes

Major Themes- Death, immortality, mortality, transience, art, nature, beauty, imagination.

Read the poem here

Related: Assonance in Poetry (Examples and Definition)

Neel Rana

About the Author- Neel Rana is a successful short story book author, flash fiction writer, literary enthusiast, entrepreneur and the founder of Pandora Post. Neel holds a degree in BA Honours in English Literature and has been writing since 2017. You can read more about him here