Poetry & Love

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For the Love of Poetry

As once said by prominent activist Helen Keller, “the best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched—they must be felt with the heart.” One of the few things that can’t be touched but experienced with the heart is poetry. Just as poetry is embraced on a more powerful level with the heart, so is the universal concept of love. And although love can come in a combination of ways whether it be between a child and a mother, an old withered couple, or even a kid and his/her chocolate ice cream, the concepts and stepping stones of love is interchangeably parallel to poetry.

One aspect many associate with love is that fact that it can be dramatic and hard to understand at times. In great similarity is poetry’s deep and complex verses. Lemn Sissay, a fairly new British author and poet wrote a brief but powerful piece of poetry on love. His Love Poem goes as follows,

“You remind me
define me
incline me.
Kim 2
If you died
I’d.”

One might say that Sissay’s poem is exaggerated to a large extent because of the mention of his own death being the result of the passing of his love. Many who have not been in a similar position as the poet may have difficulty understanding why someone would take their own life for another person. But although it is challenging to understand his sentiment for his beloved at the surface of his words, just like poetry, the meaning and purpose needs to be grasped on a more in-depth level. Similar to Lemn Sissay’s poem, the piece Your Laughter by Nobel Prize for Literature winner Pablo Neruda makes it explicit that without his dearest darling’s laughter, he will eventually die. Neruda writes in his piece “deny my bread, air, light, spring, but never your laughter for I would die.” Throughout his whole poem, the poet constantly compares things that are deemed vital in life to the laughter of his love. His hierarchy of her laughter above food and air is difficult to understand...
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