Friday, July 30, 2010

Poetry Friday: Love's as Warm as Tears

I'm making a lot of progress in my classroom, and most of my books have been found. When the earthquake happened, most of the bookcases in both of our school libraries (elementary and secondary) fell down. Some of the books in my classroom were scattered but not too many. Shortly after that, the school buildings were hastily converted to sleeping space for doctors and soldiers, and the books from the libraries and my classroom (and other classrooms) were removed and piled unceremoniously out of the way. Many of my books ended up in the enormous heap that used to be the library, and fortunately most of mine were well-marked and easily distinguished from the library books. The ones from my classroom library have "23" written on them, and my personal copies mostly have my name in them.

As I've been rearranging everything, I've been enjoying getting reacquainted with what is on my shelves. I found a book on Wednesday called Poems, by C. S. Lewis. My friend Janet gave it to me for my 20th birthday, which was quite a while ago. (Thanks, Janet!) As I read through some of the poems in the book, I found this one, which I enjoyed at 20 and find even more beautiful now. In those years I have learned much more about love - all kinds of love - than I knew then.

Love's as Warm as Tears

by C. S. Lewis

Love's as warm as tears,
Love is tears:
Pressure within the brain,
Tension at the throat,
Deluge, weeks of rain,
Haystacks afloat,
Featureless seas between
Hedges, where once was green.

Love's as fierce as fire,
Love is fire:
All sorts - infernal heat
Clinkered with greed and pride,
Lyric desire, sharp-sweet,
Laughing, even when denied,
And that empyreal flame
Whence all loves came.

Love's as fresh as spring,
Love is spring:
Bird-song hung in the air,
Cool smells in a wood,
Whispering, "Dare! Dare!"
To sap, to blood,
Telling "Ease, safety, rest,
Are good; not best."

Love's as hard as nails,
Love is nails:
Blunt, thick, hammered through
The medial nerves of One
Who, having made us, knew
The thing He had done,
Seeing (with all that is)
Our cross, and His.

Here's today's Poetry Friday roundup.


Janet said...

You're welcome. :-)

I don't remember that poem, but I like its refusal to put love in any one box.

"Ease, safety, rest are good, not best." Needed that line today!

Glad you're re-meeting old books -- old friends.

Irene Latham said...

I love how this poem really shows the difference between simile and metaphor... how the metaphor is such a powerful statement but brings with it a certain responsibility... interesting. Thanks for sharing!

Tricia said...

What a powerful poem!

Anonymous said...

So powerful and true. Glad I found this poem so late in my life.