Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

Those of you who are new to this blog might not know that on Valentine's Day I post poems and lyrics that make me think of love. Here is the first post, and here is the second.

And here's this year's.

[somewhere i have never travelled]

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
any experience, your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully, mysteriously) her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully, suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility: whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens; only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands

ee cummings

They who are near me

They who are near to me do not know that

you are nearer to me than they are.

They who speak to me do not know that

my heart is full with your unspoken words.

They who crowd in my path do now know that I am walking alone with you.

They who love me do not know that

their love brings you to me.

Rabindranath Tagore

"Ugly Love"

Dear cousin,
I got your letter
It was more than i thought i deserved
Well she sounds perfect, all i dream of
And i dream about so much it is absurd
But when i get there and she sees me
I'll be impressed if she does not run screaming

My kind of love is an ugly love
But it's real and it lasts a long, long time

I had a thought while i was sleeping
And i dreamed about a place for us to rest
Eternity under the old oak tree
But i go too far i guess
Maybe i'll think about tomorrow
And maybe i can get her to stay that long

'cause my kind of love is an ugly love
But it's real and it lasts a long, long time

And if she finds me so repulsive
She wouldn't be the first to wretch
Well i decided one day long ago
I was never gonna be the greatest catch
And if she cares about the car i drive
Then she can get in hers
The moment i arrive

'cause my kind of love is an ugly love
But it's real and it lasts a long, long time

EELS

Variations on the word sleep
I would like to watch you sleeping,
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you,
sleeping. I would like to sleep
with you, to enter
your sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over my head
 and walk with you through that lucent
wavering forest of bluegreen leaves
with its watery sun & three moons
towards the cave where you must descend,
towards your worst fear
 I would like to give you the silver
branch, the small white flower, the one
word that will protect you
from the grief at the center
of your dream, from the grief
at the center I would like to follow
you up the long stairway
again & become
the boat that would row you back
carefully, a flame
in two cupped hands
to where your body lies
beside me, and as you enter
it as easily as breathing in
 I would like to be the air
that inhabits you for a moment
only. I would like to be that unnoticed
& that necessary.

Margaret Atwood

i like my body when it is with your

i like my body when it is with your
body. It is so quite a new thing.
Muscles better and nerves more.
i like your body. i like what it does,
i like its hows. i like to feel the spine
of your body and its bones, and the trembling
-firm-smooth ness and which i will
again and again and again
kiss, i like kissing this and that of you,
i like, slowly stroking the, shocking fuzz
of your electric fur, and what-is-it comes
over parting flesh . . . . And eyes big Love-crumbs,

and possibly i like the thrill

of under me you quite so new

ee cummings

"First Day Of My Life"

This is the first day of my life
I swear I was born right in the doorway
I went out in the rain suddenly everything changed
They're spreading blankets on the beach

Yours is the first face that I saw
I think I was blind before I met you
Now I don’t know where I am
I don’t know where I’ve been
But I know where I want to go

And so I thought I’d let you know
That these things take forever
I especially am slow
But I realize that I need you
And I wondered if I could come home

Remember the time you drove all night
Just to meet me in the morning
And I thought it was strange you said everything changed
You felt as if you'd just woke up
And you said “this is the first day of my life
I’m glad I didn’t die before I met you
But now I don’t care I could go anywhere with you
And I’d probably be happy”

So if you want to be with me
With these things there’s no telling
We just have to wait and see
But I’d rather be working for a paycheck
Than waiting to win the lottery
Besides maybe this time is different
I mean I really think you like me

Bright Eyes


Quarantine

In the worst hour of the worst season
of the worst year of a whole people
a man set out from the workhouse with his wife.
He was walking-they were both walking-north.

She was sick with famine fever and could not keep up.
He lifted her and put her on his back.
He walked like that west and north.
Until at nightfall under freezing stars they arrived.

In the morning they were both found dead.
Of cold. Of hunger. Of the toxins of a whole history.
But her feet were held against his breastbone.
The last heat of his flesh was his last gift to her.

Let no love poem ever come to this threshold.
There is no place here for the inexact
praise of the easy graces and sensuality of the body.
There is only time for this merciless inventory:

Their death together in the winter of 1847.
Also what they suffered. How they lived.
And what there is between a man and a woman.
And in which darkness it can best be proved.

Eavan Boland 2001

3 comments:

lulu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lulu said...

Fucking Bright Eyes. Breaks my heart.

Every year I make the mistake of reading this post. And I end up in tears.

Bubs said...

Happy Valentines Day! That first ee cummings poem is one of my bride's favorites. All of your choices are wonderful.