Tag Archives: love
This year, I’ve decided to read a poem a day. It gets difficult to quantify, sometimes, mainly because a) I’m exploring what’s poetry supposed to mean, and b) I like reading poetry collections. In addition to poem/day, I’m also trying to read a poetry collection each month. (But at this point I’m sure I’m just showing off.)
But, since I am doing this for myself, and I am too lazy to think of things to blog about (unless you read my poetry blog where I post more often) I thought hey, why not combine the two, and compile a list of great poems I’ve read every month!
The idea for this series is for me to post at least four poems (one poem/week) that I especially enjoyed every month. This way I can keep a check on myself (with respect to reading) and have something to blog about.
February has been a weirdly action-packed month for me in a way that’s not happened in years. So, maybe that inspired my favourite poems of the month. (Or at least the ones I’ve mentioned here).
So here’s a list of my favourite poems for Februaury:
1) My wife’s the reason anything gets done, by Lin Manuel Miranda.
If you know me at all in real life, you would know how much I love Lin Manuel Miranda as a person, as well as a writer. Sometimes, I want to chill with him, so he rubs off on me a little bit, and other times I wish I could just be with him so I learn how he’s so amazingly talented and pure… you get the drift.
This poem is the one he read out at the Tony’s as a tribute to the victims of the Orlando shooting. Boy, are we blessed for being alive at the same time as him.
My wife’s the reason anything gets done.
She nudges me towards promise by degrees.
She is a perfect symphony of one.
Our son is her most beautiful reprise.
We chase the melodies that seem to find us
Until they’re finished songs and start to play.
When senseless acts of tragedy remind us
That nothing here is promised, not one day
This show is proof that history remembers.
We live through times when hate and fear seem stronger.
We rise and fall, and light from dying embers
Remembrances that hope and love last longer.
And love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love;
Cannot be killed or swept aside.
I sing Vanessa’s symphony; Eliza tells her story.
Now fill the world with music, love, and pride.
Here’s him performing it: link
2) Daddy, by Sylvia Plath
I’d never really paid attention to Sylvia Plath, or had never really read her up until now, and boy what a big, big mistake that was! I wish i had her craft or emotions while writing, because it oozes out of her words and gets to me like I’ve never really felt before.
Here’s an excerpt:
You stand at the blackboard, daddy,
In the picture I have of you,
A cleft in your chin instead of your foot
But no less a devil for that, no not
Any less the black man who
Bit my pretty red heart in two.
I was ten when they buried you.
At twenty I tried to die
And get back, back, back to you.
I thought even the bones would do
And here’s the entire poem, which I thought was genius!*
3) Every Day You Play, by Pablo Neruda
I cannot get the notion that Neruda is a paedophile** away even as I read this, but if I push it away, this poem is so beautiful. Of course, I even wrote a post inspired by it. It’s just too beautiful, I think.
You are like nobody since I love you.
Let me spread you out among yellow garlands.
Who writes your name in letters of smoke among the stars of the south?
Oh let me remember you as you were before you existed.
Suddenly the wind howls and bangs at my shut window.
The sky is a net crammed with shadowy fish.
Here all the winds let go sooner or later, all of them.
The rain takes off her clothes.
4) Dreams, by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes is one of my favourite poets, mainly because he taught me that poetry could send out a social message. I’m not saying he’s the first poet to do that, but his is the first poetry I read that made me realize that it is possible.
This is the entire poem:
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.
*I read Ariel as my poetry collection for the month, and I loved most of the poems in it. So, also check out: Tulips, Lady Lazarus, and Cut. I mean how can someone write so wonderfully!!! Beyond me. Besides, the foreword by her daughter almost made me cry. (Maybe I should have written some stuff down for a book reaction post?)
**I generally cannot separate the art from the artist, so posting this is quite weird. But then again, I really like the idea of I want to do with you what spring does with the cherry trees now that I kind of understand it.
I have never been the Live Fast, Die Young kind of a person. But sometimes, I wish that were not the case.
Thus situation was not supposed to be a thing. This situation was supposed to be a touch and go, something that was fun, uncomplicated, and just a tad bit out of my comfort zone.
It’s become so, so much more. I should have realized (or remembered?) that I don’t do anything half-assed. I should have realised that I was going to go all in, because that’s just who I am. I should have realized that no matter how blasé I am, there are things that don’t work like that.
When I first read I want
to do with you what spring does with the cherry trees, I had no idea what that meant. But knowing you, in your rawest of forms, and yet, not at all, I know what that means. I know what Neruda meant when he said that, because you are the spring and I am the cherry tree.
Some days, I think I remember you as you were before you existed- raw glitter and stardust. I see pieces of you and think, oh, I know you more than I did yesterday, and that’s enough. I see pieces of you and marvel at all the beautiful things the universe has to offer. Maybe the universe isn’t offering it to me, but I marvel still.
I want to write your names in the stars, and the moon. I want to write your name in the vapours of clouds and the smokes of fire, for I’m sure there’s nothing more beautiful than it. I’m sure there’s no name more beautiful than mine on your lips. I’m sure there is no sound more beautiful than the chirpy mornings after you’ve let me in.
There will come a day when all of this ceases to exist, and I will think of this day, writing you an ode with bliss and a contented smile. And I will, one day, think of you as Early Christmas. A life lesson. A lesson in love, and in the beauty of hope and possibility.
Till then, however, I will let your words rain over me. And I will be happy with you for teaching me what it means to be incandescently happy, even if it were momentary. And I will let you do with me spring does with the cherry trees.