- February 1 – First broadcast on Sveriges Radio (Sweden) of the continuing programme Dagens dikt ("Poem of the day").
- Summer – In Nazi Germany, Wolfgang Willrich, a member of the SS, lampoons German expressionist poet Gottfried Benn in his book Säuberung des Kunsttempels; Heinrich Himmler, however, steps in to reprimand Willrich and defends Benn on the grounds of his pro-Nazi record since 1933 (his earlier artistic output being dismissed as irrelevant).
- Iowa Writers' Workshop is founded by Paul Engle at the University of Iowa
- George Hill Dillon becomes editor of Poetry Magazine, remaining in that post until 1949.
- Poems of colonial American pastor Edward Taylor (d. 1729) are first discovered and published.
- W. B. Yeats concludes his recordings of his own verse and his broadcast lectures on the BBC (begun in 1936).
Works published in English
- Wilson MacDonald, Comber Cove. Toronto: S.J.R. Saunders.
- E. J. Pratt, The Fable of the Goats and Other Poems, Toronto: Macmillan. Governor General's Award 1937.
- Harindranath Chattopadhyaya, Strange Journey ( Poetry in English ), Madras: Shakti Karyalayam
- P. R. Kaikini, This Civilization ( Poetry in English ), Bombay: New Book Co.
- Iqbal Ali Shah, editor, The Coronation Book of Oriental Literature ( Poetry in English ), London: Sampson Low, Marston and Co., 404 pages; anthology; Indian poetry published in the United Kingdom
- W. H. Auden, Spain
- W. H. Auden and Louis MacNeice, Letters from Iceland, partly poetry
- George Barker, Calamiterror
- John Betjeman, Continual Dew: A little book of bourgeois verse, including "The Arrest of Oscar Wilde at the Cadogan Hotel"
- Edmund Blunden, A Ballad of Titles, An elegy, and other poems and Uneasy Quiet
- Walter de la Mare, This Year, Next Year, illustrations by Harold Jones, Faber
- David Jones, In Parenthesis, frontispiece by author, Faber
- Charles Madge, The Disappearing Castle
- Edwin Muir, Journeys and Places
- Enoch Powell, First Poems, Oxford: Blackwell
- Isaac Rosenberg, Collected Works, foreword by Siegfried Sassoon; posthumously published
- Iqbal Ali Shah, editor, The Coronation Book of Oriental Literature, London: Sampson Low, Marston and Co., 404 pages; anthology; Indian poetry in English, published in the United Kingdom
- Stevie Smith, A Good Time Was Had By All
- W. H. Auden, with Louis MacNeice, Letters from Iceland
- R. P. Blackmur, From Jordan's Delight
- Louise Bogan, the Sleeping Fury
- Richard Eberhart, Reading the Spirit
- Robert Hillyer, A Letter to Robert Frost and Others
- Robinson Jeffers, Such Counsels You Gave to Me
- Josephine Johnson, Year's End
- Edna St. Vincent Millay, Conversation at Midnight
- Ezra Pound, The Fifth Decad of Cantos
- May Sarton, Encounter in April
- Dr. Seuss, And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, the author's first book; for children
- Wallace Stevens, The Man with the Blue Guitar, and Other Poems, includes "The Man With the Blue Guitar," "A Thought Revolved," and "The Men That Are Falling", Knopf
- Allen Tate, Selected Poems
Other in English
- Allen Curnow, Enemies: Poems 1934–36 (Caxton), New Zealand
- Robin Hyde, Wednesday's Children, New Zealand
- Seaforth Mackenzie, Our Earth, Sydney: Angus and Robertson; Australia
Works published in French
- Jacques Audiberti, Race des hommes
- Rene-Guy Cadou, Les Brancardiers de l'aube, the author's first book of poems, published when he was 17 years old
- Pierre Jean Jouve, Matière celeste
- Max Jacob, Morceaux choisis
- Oscar Vladislas de Lubicz-Milosz, also known as O. V. de L. Milosz, Dix-sept Poèmes de Milosz
- Henri Michaux, Plume, précédé de Lointain intérieur
- Pierre Reverdy, Ferraille
- Philippe Soupault, Poésies Complètes 1917–1973
Works published in other languages
Including all of the British colonies that later became India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal. Listed alphabetically by first name, regardless of surname:
- Mallavarapu Visveswara Rao, Madukila, notable for its style, sentiments and various metrics
- Rabindranath Tagore:
- Samar Sen, Kayekti Kabita, Indian, Bengali-language
- Sudhindranath Dutta, Krandasi
- Gangula Sayi Reddi, Kapu bidda, poems on the condition of farmers; Telugu
- Gurram Jashuva, editor, Khanda Kavyamu or Jashuva Khandakavyalu, in seven volumes, published from this year to 1949; anthology of Telagu poetry
- Peer Aziz Ullah Haqqani, Qissa-e-Mumtaz E Benazir, a large masnavi of Romantic mysticism; Telugu; posthumous
- Srirangam arayanababu, Rudhirajyoti, Telugu
- Vedula Satyanarayan Shastri, Dipavali, romantic lyrics, Telugu
- Mehr Lal Soni Zia Fatehabadi Noor-e-Mashriq (The Light of the East) - Collection of nazms, geets and sonnets published by Jyoti Prasad Gupta, Jyoti Printing Works, Esplanade, Delhi in 1937.
Other Indian languages
- Anupa Sharma, Siddharth, a Hindi epic in 18 chapters on the story of Gautama Buddha
- D. R. Bendre, also known as Ambikatanaya Datta, Sakhigita, the title poem is autobiographical; Kannada
- Devandas Kishinani, 'Purab Sandes, Indian, Sindhi-language
- Ghulam Mohammad Hanafi, Jang-e Amir Hamza, a Jangnama, based on an episode in the movement to spread Islam; Kashmiri
- Hijam Anganhal Simha, Singel Indu, a long narrative Meitei poem
- Manjewshwara Govinda Pai, Golgotha, long narrative poem on the final days of Jesus Christ, Kannada
- Riddhinath Jha, Pravasi Mithiles, verses praising the Maharaja of Darbhanga; Maithili
- Siyaramsharan Gupta, Bapu, on Gandhi and his ideology, Hindi
- Xavier Abril, Descubrimiento del alba
- José Santos Chocano, Poemas de amor doliente, Peru
- Manuel Moreno Jimeno, Así bajaron los perros
- Luis Fabio Xammar, Waino
Other in Spanish
Awards and honors
- Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry: W. H. Auden
- Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress (the post which was later called "Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress"): Joseph Auslander appointed this year (he would serve until 1941)
- Fellowship of the Academy of American Poets: Edwin Markham
- Governor General's Award, poetry or drama: The Fable of the Goats, E. J. Pratt
Death years link to the corresponding "[year] in poetry" article:
- January 1:
- January 14 – J. Bernlef, born Hendrik Jan Marsman (died 2012), Dutch poet, novelist and translator
- February 21 – Mervyn Morris, Jamaican poet
- February 27 – Peter Hamm (died 2019), German poet, author, journalist, editor and literary critic
- April 10 – Bella Akhmadulina (died 2010), Russian poet
- April 23 – Coleman Barks, American poet who, although he neither speaks nor reads Persian, is nonetheless renowned as a translator of Rumi and other mystic poets of Persia
- April 30 – Tony Harrison, English poet and playwright
- May 11 – Michael Heller, American poet
- May 21 – Glen Sorestad, Canadian poet
- June 8 – Gillian Clarke, native Welsh, English-language poet, playwright, editor, broadcaster, lecturer and translator (from Welsh)
- June 10 – Susan Howe, American poet and critic closely associated with the Language poets
- July 3 – Milovan Danojlić, Serbian poet and essayist (died 2022)
- July 10 – Kurt Bartsch, German poet
- July 29 – Eleanor Wilner, American poet and editor
- August 3
- September 14 – Douglas Oliver (died 2000), British poet
- October 11 – R. H. W. Dillard, American poet, author, critic and translator
- November 4 – W. Dabney Stuart, American poet
- November 9
- November 11 – Alicia Ostriker, American poet and academic
- November 19 – Meg Campbell (died 2007), New Zealand poet and wife of Alistair Campbell
- December 1 – Eugene B. Redmond, African-American poet
- December 31 – Nicolas Born (died 1979), German poet
Death years link to the corresponding "[year] in poetry" article:
- March 8 – Albert Verwey (born 1865), Dutch poet
- June 22 – Jean-Joseph Rabearivelo (born 1901?), Malagasy poet writing in French; suicide
- July 18 – Julian Bell (born 1908), English poet, and a member of a family whose notable members include his parents, Clive and Vanessa Bell; his aunt, Virginia Woolf; his younger brother, writer Quentin Bell; and his half-sister, writer and painter Angelica Garnett; killed in the Spanish Civil War
- August 11 – Edith Wharton (born 1862), American novelist, short story writer, designer and poet
- September 8 – Anna Hempstead Branch (born 1875), American poet
- October 22 – Chūya Nakahara 中原 中也 (born 1907), early Shōwa period Japanese poet (surname: Nakahara)
- December 26 – Ivor Gurney (born 1890), English composer and poet; tuberculosis while suffering delusional insanity
- December 29 – Don Marquis (born 1878), American poet, artist, newspaper columnist, humorist, playwright and author best known for creating the characters "Archy" and "Mehitabel"
- Also – Constance Woodrow (born 1899), English-born Canadian poet
- "Dagens dikt: historik" (in Swedish). Sveriges Radio.
- By Thomas H. Johnson, in The New England Quarterly.
- Mac Liammoir, Michael; Boland, Eavan (1971). W. B. Yeats. Thames and Hudson Literary Lives. London: Thames and Hudson. pp. 121–122.
- Search results: Wilson MacDonald, Open Library, Web, May 10, 2011.
- "Bibliography," Selected Poems of E. J. Pratt, Peter Buitenhuis ed., Toronto: Macmillan, 1968, 207-208.
- Naik, M. K., Perspectives on Indian poetry in English, p. 230, (published by Abhinav Publications, 1984, ISBN 0-391-03286-0, ISBN 978-0-391-03286-6), retrieved via Google Books, June 12, 2009
- Vinayak Krishna Gokak, The Golden Treasury Of Indo-Anglian Poetry (1828-1965), p 322, New Delhi: Sahitya Akademi (1970, first edition; 2006 reprint), ISBN 81-260-1196-3, retrieved August 6, 2010
- Joshi, Irene, compiler, "Poetry Anthologies" Archived 2009-08-30 at the Wayback Machine, "Poetry Anthologies" section, "University Libraries, University of Washington" website, "Last updated May 8, 1998", retrieved June 16, 2009. 2009-06-19.
- Cox, Michael, ed. (2004). The Concise Oxford Chronology of English Literature. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-860634-6.
- "Works by Enoch Powell". enochpowell.net.[permanent dead link]
- Ludwig, Richard M.; Nault, Clifford A. Jr. (1986). Annals of American Literature: 1602–1983. New York: Oxford University Press.
- "Wallace Stevens (1879-1955)". Poetry Foundation. Archived from the original on 2009-03-02. Retrieved 2009-04-09.
- Hayne, David M. (2011-02-10), "Hector de Saint-Denys Garneau", The Canadian Encyclopedia, archived from the original on 2011-07-16.
- Bree, Germaine, Twentieth-Century French Literature, translated by Louise Guiney, Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1983
- Auster, Paul, editor, The Random House Book of Twentieth-Century French Poetry: with Translations by American and British Poets, New York: Random House, 1982 ISBN 0-394-52197-8
- Das, Sisir Kumar and various, History of Indian Literature: 1911-1956: struggle for freedom: triumph and tragedy, Volume 2, 1995, published by Sahitya Akademi, ISBN 978-81-7201-798-9, retrieved via Google Books on December 23, 2008
- Fitts, Dudley. (1947). Anthology of Contemporary Latin-American Poetry/Antología de la Poesía Americana Contemporánea. Norfolk, Conn.: New Directions; London: The Falcoln Press ("Printed in U.S.A."). pp. 589, 621, 649.
- "José Santos Chocano". Jaume University. Archived from the original on 2012-08-23. Retrieved 2011-08-29.
- Debicki, Andrew P., Spanish Poetry of the Twentieth Century: Modernity and Beyond, p 43, University Press of Kentucky, 1995, ISBN 978-0-8131-0835-3, retrieved via Google Books, November 21, 2009
- "Cumulative List of Winners of the Governor General's Literary Awards" Archived 2011-05-14 at the Wayback Machine, Canada Council. Web, Feb. 10, 2011.
- Hofmann, Michael, ed. (2006). Twentieth-Century German Poetry: An Anthology. Macmillan/Farrar, Straus and Giroux.