15 Wonderful Songs Inspired by Poets

Under the spell of verse, alliteration, rhyming and rhythm, musicians have long been enchanted by the masterminds behind poetry. Whether it be the mention of a poet’s name, appropriation of lines from their works, or some other tribute, literary references pervade many bands’ lyrics. It’s always inspiring to hear how one artist’s work can open the doors to creativity across other art forms, so throw on your headphones and dig out those poetry anthologies as we recount some killer music that was influenced by the likes of Sylvia Plath, e.e. cummings, and John Donne.

Noah and the Whale — “Life Is Life”
Poet: Charles Bukowski

The booze-soaked, overtly sexual poet and novelist has inspired many an artist, including British folk-pop outfit Noah and the Whale. The Charlie Fink-fronted band’s latest album title pays homage to Bukowski’s collection The Last Night of the Earth Poems, while this uplifting tune’s name and lyrics reference his poem “The Laughing Heart.”