CommonLit is a free collection of fiction and nonfiction for 5th-12th grade classrooms. Search and filter our collection by lexile, grade, theme, genre, literary device, or common core standard.
We Real Cool
A group of young men at a pool hall don't care about responsibilities.
O Captain! My Captain!
A sailor grieves the loss of his captain, who dies before the completion of their journey.
On Being Brought from Africa to America
A woman describes being brought to America from Africa as a slave and the impact of the experience on her religious beliefs.
In this classic Frost poem, a speaker questions the necessity of a dilapidated stone wall between his land and his neighbor's.
Verses Written by a Young Lady, on Women Born to Be Controll'd!
A speaker laments the position of women as was then conceived natural: subservient to men.
To My Dear and Loving Husband
A woman professes her love to her husband.
Casey at the Bat
Ernest Lawrence Thayer
In one of the most classic sports poems in history, an arrogant player approaches the base with the weight of the game on his shoulders.
When I Have Fears That I May Cease to Be
A speaker shares his desires for his future and his fears that he will not accomplish them.
Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard
A man speculates on the lives of the dead — and what may be said of him, after death — as he walks through a country churchyard.
We Grow Accustomed to the Dark
In this poem, "the Dark" is something unknown and ever-present.
To An Athlete Dying Young
A. E. Housman
The speaker addresses an elegy to a champion runner who died at the height of his physical prime.
Learning to Read
Francis Ellen Watkins Harper
An African American child in 1872 describes what it was like to be discouraged from learning how to read.
The Transformation of Arachne into a Spider
Arachne, a skilled weaver, offends the goddess Athena by her lack of humility and suffers the consequences.
Romeo & Juliet: Act V, Scene III
The final scene of this famous drama depicts the deaths of both Romeo and Juliet.
Nothing Gold Can Stay
A classic poem packed with metaphors in which Frost depicts the fleeting nature of youth.
Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night
Dylan Thomas' most famous poem, written for his dying father, in which he urges him to "rage, rage against the dying of the light."
I'm Nobody! Who Are You?
Dickinson calls public life "dreary" and takes pride in maintaining a private identity.
Answer to A Child's Question
Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Love is simple, good, and pure in this Romantic poem.