If you liked ______, you should read _______.

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

I put my own spin on the theme this week–instead of recommending books, I’m recommending poems! I’m a little late to post this because it took me forever to come up with an idea, then forever to actually find a list of books and poems that relate to each other.  So I chose some popular books and matched them with a popular poem that has a similar theme or feeling to it. I also chose a different poet for each recommendation, which was incredibly difficult because I would have liked to put Sylvia Plath literally everywhere (seriously, just go read all of Sylvia Plath). 

Failing to fetch me at first keep encouraged,
Missing me one place search another,
I stop somewhere waiting for you.
This one is pretty self-explanatory, as the plot of the book is heavily driven by this poem.

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green // 
The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T. S. Eliot
Then how should I begin
To spit out all the butt-ends of my days and ways?
               And how should I presume?
Again, a little self-explanatory because Hazel quotes this in the actual book, but also because both Prufrock and Hazel are living a monotonous life when we meet them and wonder if it’s worth it to “disturb the universe.”

Looking for Alaska by John Green // 
Lady Lazarus by Sylvia Plath
Is an art, like everything else.
I do it exceptionally well.
I’m not sure how to explain this one without spoilers, so you’ll just have to connect the dots yourself.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak // 
Because I could not stop for Death by Emily Dickinson
We slowly drove – He knew no haste
And I had put away
My labor and my leisure too,
For His Civility –
The personification of Death as a kind and somewhat caring creature.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn // 
Prophyria’s Lover by Robert Browning
Porphyria worshipped me; surprise
       Made my heart swell, and still it grew
       While I debated what to do.
Passion gone wrong, basically. From the perspective of a crazy person.

If I Stay by Gayle Foreman // 
When I have fears that I may cease to be by John Keats
When I behold, upon the night’s starred face,
   Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
And think that I may never live to trace
   Their shadows with the magic hand of chance;
Both of these narrators are having a life-crisis and are worried about what they might miss out on if they die too soon.

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
(or The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger) // 
I go by Taniguchi Buson
I go,
you stay;
two autumns
This haiku can be applied to so many stories, but I feel like it goes especially well with these two.

Atonement by Ian McEwan // 
Dover Beach by Matthew Arnold
and we are here as on a darkling plain
swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
where ignorant armies clash by night.
This one is hard for me to explain because it’s more like a feeling that both book and poem gives off. War is a factor in both of these, with the overall theme of the world being a terrible place and the need to cling to the one you love. This explanation doesn’t really do the book/poem justice, so you should just go read them both.

Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie // 
Birches by Robert Frost
I’d like to get away from earth awhile
And then come back to it and begin over.
Both of these focus on boyhood, imagination, and the struggle of growing up.

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart // 
The Widow’s Lament in Springtime by Wallace Stevens
but the grief in my heart
is stronger than they,
for though they were my joy
formerly, today I notice them
and turn away forgetting.
Although the circumstances in both these poems are very different, they both focus on the speaker’s immense grief.

Have a happy Tuesday! And tell me if you’ve ever read any of these poems. Can you think of any more that I didn’t list? I tried to match up The Hunger Games with something but couldn’t find a great fit. 


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