Lions are strong and majestic creatures, with impressive fur and sharp claws. In this collection of poems about lions, we explore the lion in all its glory. From the lion’s love for its family to its fierce hunting behavior, these poems will take you on a journey into the heart of this majestic animal.
1. The Lion by William Morris
The Beasts that be
In wood and waste,
Now sit and see,
Nor ride nor haste.
2. Now The Hungry Lion Roar by William Shakespeare
From “A Midsummer-Night’s Dream,” Act V. Scene 2
NOW the hungry lion roars,
And the wolf behowls the moon;
Whilst the heavy ploughman snores,
All with weary task fordone.
Now the wasted brands do glow,
Whilst the screech-owl, screeching loud,
Puts the wretch that lies in woe
In remembrance of a shroud.
Now it is the time of night,
That the graves, all gaping wide,
Every one lets forth his sprite,
In the churchway paths to glide:
And we fairies, that do run
By the triple Hecate’s team,
From the presence of the sun,
Following darkness like a dream,
Now are frolic; not a mouse
Shall disturb this hallowed house:
I am sent with broom before
To sweep the dust behind the door.
3. A Lion Roars by Alf Hutchison
Come with me, hold tight my hand,
Whilst I show you my beloved land,
Africa’s blood washes through my veins,
From Bushveld glades to savanna plains.
Have you ever heard a lion roar,
Been close enough to touch his paw,
Stared eye to eye, smelled his breath,
Observed razor teeth of instant death;
And then that roar…that numbing sound
Sending tremors through the very ground.
A lightening swipe of five sharp claws;
No video this, you can’t press pause.
Reality life, your minutes numbered,
Certain death… your life encumbered;
But that day twas not meant to be,
God’s heaven had no need of me.
A shot rang out…a sound so sweet,
The king of beasts lay at my feet,
This was no trophy, no great prize.
My life…his death…no compromise.
4. The Epic Of The Lion by Victor Hugo
A Lion in his jaws caught up a child–
Not harming it–and to the woodland, wild
With secret streams and lairs, bore off his prey–
The beast, as one might cull a bud in May.
It was a rosy boy, a king’s own pride,
A ten-year lad, with bright eyes shining wide,
And save this son his majesty beside
Had but one girl, two years of age, and so
The monarch suffered, being old, much woe;
His heir the monster’s prey, while the whole land
In dread both of the beast and king did stand;
Sore terrified were all.
By came a knight
That road, who halted, asking, ‘What’s the fright?’
They told him, and he spurred straight for the site!
The beast was seen to smile ere joined they fight,
The man and monster, in most desperate duel,
Like warring giants, angry, huge, and cruel.
Stout though the knight, the lion stronger was,
And tore that brave breast under its cuirass,
Scrunching that hero, till he sprawled, alas!
Beneath his shield, all blood and mud and mess:
Whereat the lion feasted: then it went
Back to its rocky couch and slept content.
Sudden, loud cries and clamors! striking out
Qualm to the heart of the quiet, horn and shout
Causing the solemn wood to reel with rout.
Terrific was this noise that rolled before;
It seemed a squadron; nay, ’twas something more–
A whole battalion, sent by that sad king
With force of arms his little prince to bring,
Together with the lion’s bleeding hide.
Which here was right or wrong? Who can decide?
Have beasts or men most claim to live? God wots!
He is the unit, we the cipher-dots.
Ranged in the order a great hunt should have,
They soon between the trunks espy the cave.
‘Yes, that is it! the very mouth of the den!’
The trees all round it muttered, warning men;
Still they kept step and neared it. Look you now,
Company’s pleasant, and there were a thou–
Good Lord! all in a moment, there’s its face!
Frightful! they saw the lion! Not one pace
Further stirred any man; but bolt and dart
Made target of the beast. He, on his part,
As calm as Pelion in the rain or hail,
Bristled majestic from the teeth to tail,
And shook full fifty missiles from his hide,
But no heed took he; steadfastly he eyed,
And roared a roar, hoarse, vibrant, vengeful, dread,
A rolling, raging peal of wrath, which spread,
Making the half-awakened thunder cry,
‘Who thunders there?’ from its black bed of sky.
This ended all! Sheer horror cleared the coast;
As fogs are driven by the wind, that valorous host
Melted, dispersed to all the quarters four,
Clean panic-stricken by that monstrous roar.
Then quoth the lion, ‘Woods and mountains, see,
A thousand men, enslaved, fear one beast free!’
He followed towards the hill, climbed high above,
Lifted his voice, and, as the sowers sow
The seed down wind, thus did that lion throw
His message far enough the town to reach:
‘King! your behavior really passes speech!
Thus far no harm I’ve wrought to him your son;
But now I give you notice–when night’s done,
I will make entry at your city-gate,
Bringing the prince alive; and those who wait
To see him in my jaws–your lackey-crew–
Shall see me eat him in your palace, too!’
Next morning, this is what was viewed in town:
Dawn coming–people going–some adown
Praying, some crying; pallid cheeks, swift feet,
And a huge lion stalking through the street.
It seemed scarce short of rash impiety
To cross its path as the fierce beast went by.
So to the palace and its gilded dome
With stately steps unchallenged did he roam;
He enters it–within those walls he leapt!
For certes, though he raged and wept,
His majesty, like all, close shelter kept,
Solicitous to live, holding his breath
Specially precious to the realm. Now death
Is not thus viewed by honest beasts of prey;
And when the lion found _him_ fled away,
Ashamed to be so grand, man being so base,
He muttered to himself, ‘A wretched king!
‘Tis well; I’ll eat his boy!’ Then, wandering,
Lordly he traversed courts and corridors,
Paced beneath vaults of gold on shining floors,
Glanced at the throne deserted, stalked from hall
To hall–green, yellow, crimson–empty all!
Rich couches void, soft seats unoccupied!
And as he walked he looked from side to side
To find some pleasant nook for his repast,
Since appetite was come to munch at last
The princely morsel!–Ah! what sight astounds
That grisly lounger?
In the palace grounds
An alcove on a garden gives, and there
A tiny thing–forgot in the general fear,
Lulled in the flower-sweet dreams of infancy,
Bathed with soft sunlight falling brokenly
Through leaf and lattice–was at that moment waking;
A little lovely maid, most dear and taking,
The prince’s sister–all alone, undressed–
She sat up singing: children sing so best.
Charming this beauteous baby-maid; and so
The beast caught sight of her and stopped–
Entered–the floor creaked as he stalked straight in.
Above the playthings by the little bed
The lion put his shaggy, massive head,
Dreadful with savage might and lordly scorn,
More dreadful with that princely prey so borne;
Which she, quick spying, ‘Brother, brother!’ cried,
‘Oh, my own brother!’ and, unterrified,
She gazed upon that monster of the wood,
Whose yellow balls not Typhon had withstood,
And–well! who knows what thoughts these small heads hold?
She rose up in her cot–full height, and bold,
And shook her pink fist angrily at him.
Whereon–close to the little bed’s white rim,
All dainty silk and laces–this huge brute
Set down her brother gently at her foot,
Just as a mother might, and said to her,
‘Don’t be put out, now! There he is, dear, there!’
5. Sampson’s Lion by John Newton
The lion that on Sampson roared,
And thirsted for his blood;
With honey afterwards was stored,
And furnished him with food.
Believers, as they pace along,
With many lions meet;
But gather sweetness from the strong,
And from the eater, meat.
The lions rage and roar in vain,
For Jesus is their shield;
Their losses prove a certain gain,
Their troubles comfort yield.
The world and Satan join their strength,
To fill their souls with fears;
But crops of joy they reap at length,
From what they sow in tears.
Afflictions make them love the word,
Stir up their hearts to prayer;
And many precious proofs afford,
Of their Redeemer’s care.
The lions roar but cannot kill,
Then fear them not, my friends,
They bring us, though against their will,
The honey Jesus sends.
We have compiled some of the greatest poems about lions in this post. Reading these poems can help you get a glimpse of how powerful, intelligent, and majestic lions are. Still, there are so many amazing poems on lions out there that we did not have time to include them here. Have you come across any more such great works?
- 10 Interesting Poems About Cars You’ll Love
- Top 10 Funniest Poems About Superheroes
- 5 Magnificent Poems About Solar Eclipse
Thomas Dao is the guy who created Poem Home, a website where people can read about all things poetry related. When he’s not busy working on his next project, you can find him reading a good book or spending time with family and friends.