Thursday, May 15, 2008

Thinking and Reading on Love...

My dear friend Christopher took me to a bookstore. Not just any bookstore - the Strand, with eight miles of books, mostly secondhand. If you know me well, you can imagine how much time I spent just drooling over shelf after shelf...

I've been fascinated with the Napoleonic era and its mindset for a while, and I've recently developed a celebrity crush on poet Edna St Vincent Millay. So I found two books, one with quotes of Napoleon and one with poems of Edna's. Here is what I want to share, and it's been helping this denying-lovesick poet these past few days.

"I do not ask you for the definition of love. I was in love once, and I remember it well enough not to require those metaphysical definitions that merely confuse matters. I do more than deny its existence. I believe it to be harmful to society, to individual happiness - in short, I believe that... it would be the merciful deed of a protective divinity to rid us of love and to liberate the world from it." -N. Bonaparte

"What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why,
I have forgotten, and what arms have lain
Under my head till morning; but the rain
Is full of ghosts tonight, that tap and sigh
Upon the glass and listen for reply,
And in my heart there stirs a quiet pain
For unremembered lads that not again
Will turn to me at midnight with a cry.
Thus in the winter stands the lonely tree,
Nor knows what birds have vanished one by one,
Yet knows its boughs more silent than before:
I cannot say what loves have come and gone,
I only know that summer sang in me
A little while, that in me sings no more."
-E. StV. Millay

Then Marty McConnel, a poet who regularly gives me Explody of the Brain, wrote a poem containing this line... "the ones who sing you love songs/ are never the ones who stay."

I'm just meditating and reading and wanted to share this with you all.

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