Name that poem!

A meme for a Saturday morning: I've just discovered Wordle, a site that lets you generate nice-looking multicolored "word clouds" out of any text you put into it. One of the first things I tried doing with it was running the text of various poems through it. And then I thought, "I wonder how identifiable a poem is when you turn it into a word cloud?" It occurred to me that this could have the makings of a guessing game of sorts.

So here are a few word-clouds, all using fairly well-known poems (I found all of them at

Guess away at the original poems, if you're so inclined, and post your guesses in the comments — and pass the meme on, if you like. I'll post the answers after a few days.

5 Responses to “Name that poem!”

  1. Jane Dark says:

    Well, #3 is A Valediction Forbidding Mourning, by Donne…the others, I’m still thinking about. Neat game!

  2. wolfa says:

    Number 2 is anyone lived in a pretty how town, by ee cummings, I think.

  3. Amanda says:

    Yes and yes. #4 is a tad tricky, now that I think of it.

  4. Jane Dark says:

    The 4th one has got to be Marianne Moore, I think — but which one isn’t springing to mind. I thought of her immediately when I looked at it on Saturday, and looking at it again, I still think it.

  5. Amanda says:

    So here are the answers:
    #1: Dylan Thomas, “Fern Hill”
    #2: e.e. cummings, “anyone lived in a pretty how town”
    #3: John Donne, “A Valediction Forbidding Mourning”
    #4: Marianne Moore, “Poetry” (the longer version, not the final three-line version)
    It’s interesting how much Wordle leaves out; stripping away the articles and pronouns and prepositions is a good thing, but a lot of verbs seem to go by the wayside as well. But it’s fun to play with even so!