Have I told you lately that I love you?
That song comes from the Irish folksinger, Van Morrison. I don’t know his music well at all but this is the one song that I can recall over and over again. Good music never dies. Most of you have listened to it over the years. Some of you will be Van Morrison fans. If you are from that generation, some of you will have been Jim Morrison fans. Not me. These days I just cannot stand music that depresses.
I don’t want to hear depressing lyrics about pain and worse. I contradict myself here slightly because I’m a big fan of Sylvia Plath’s poetry. I am slowly but surely getting into the meat and potatoes of her work and that of her great lover, the famous British poet laureate, Ted Hughes. I want to do a compare and contrast paper someday chronicling the endless cycle of words of love between these two famous lovers.
I contradict myself because many of the words that Sylvia wrote had to do with the pain that she felt and eventually, perhaps, led to her suicide. Every girl loves poetry surely. And did you know that good poetry does not need to rhyme at all. I found this difficult to do when I was just starting out, always trying to find words that rhymed, like Shakespeare and the many other famous poets that followed him did.
Good poetry, especially today, is just so metaphorical and it’s loaded with symbolism. It depicts the poet’s observations of life and the objects that surround her. It’s a great way to talk about love in not so many ways if you get my drift. The Old Testament Bible has a book called the Song of Songs. Perhaps those words are dated by now because it’s very tacky if you don’t mind me saying so.
But for amorous lovers, this is still perfect. I’d like to get my hands on the writings on the Prophet Muhammad – Peace be upon Him – someday. Yes, even he was known to have composed beautiful odes with love as its motif. Oh, and by the way, love makes the world go round. In spite of the mess created by the morons of the world, there’s still plenty of it to go round.
It’s usually creative people like you and me, and brave men and women of this world dishing out the love. We also see it more often than not among our children. Animals, wild or domesticated, have ways of expressing their tenderness towards us that can only serve as good examples to follow, although I do not mean this literally. Are you looking to be inspired by or towards love? Some of you are still hard at it with your Mills and Boons paperbacks in the absence of the real thing. But why not give real poetry a try every once in a while. It’s not difficult or pretentious to read.
If you are new to poetry, spend time practicing both reading and writing. You’ll soon get the hang of it. You write for yourself (for now) so you don’t need to worry about others seeing your scribbled notes. I haven’t done this for a while, but I read through one or two poems every now and then while busy with other reading and writing. It helps to keep me in the mood.
You can choose your friends, but you cannot choose your family.
When I think about it, I did not always choose my friends. Young, free-spirited but still quite lonely, there was