Lucky Poems for Friday the 13th

Friday the 13th gets a bad rap for being unlucky. Whether you believe in it or not, it doesn’t hurt to give your luck a little boost today. Make sure you pick up coins if you see them—all coins are lucky whatever side they fall on—and read what poets have said about the concept of luck.

Emily Dickinson believes luck is not a random occurrence but something we earn with hard work and eyes open to opportunity. I agree with her. The harder I work the luckier I get… but I still pick up those coins when I see them.

Luck is not by chance
Emily Dickinson 1350

Luck is not chance—
It’s Toil—
Fortune’s expensive smile
Is earned—
The Father of the Mine
Is that old-fashioned Coin
We spurned—

Just in case, we are keeping our Lucky Clover close today—a gift from my friend, Soraya!

I love Laura Kasischke’s take on objects we hold to us as talismans. I tend to collect little objects that I attach my own meaning to. Over my desk is a small glass jar full of fortunes from cookies, slips of paper with good memories written on them and other important bits.

She has a poem about it, Talisman, where she very poignantly portrays how insignificant objects take on greater importance during the crossroads of our lives. You can read it here on the Poetry Foundation’s website.

If you are planning to spend the whole day locked safe in your bedroom, you might need a little more to keep you occupied. I also recommend Ada Limón’s Lucky Wreck, published by Autumn House Press in 2006. Lucky Wreck was the winner of the 2005 Autumn House Poetry Prize.

Her work has been praised by Richard Blanco, who writes, “Both soft and tender, enormous and resounding, her poetic gestures entrance and transfix.”

I had the privilege of hearing Blanco read in 2015, and you can find that previous post here.

About Angela Yuriko Smith

Angela Yuriko Smith is an American poet, publisher and author. Her first collection of poetry, In Favor of Pain, was nominated for an 2017 Elgin Award. Her latest novella, Bitter Suites, is a 2018 Bram Stoker Awards® Finalist. Currently, she publishes Space and Time magazine, a 53 year old publication dedicated to fantasy, horror and science fiction. For more information visit or
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