Poets’ Corner: Word Woman Rosemerry, Love Poems for Cupid’s Day!

Poets’ Corner: Word Woman Rosemerry, Love Poems for Cupid’s Day!

Popular celebrations of Valentine’s Day gained traction in the late 17th century, but not until 100 years ago did most Europeans and Americans begin to agree that a long-term relationships (in those days, marriage) should be based on love and that people should be free to choose their own partners. Since then, Valentine’s Day has evolved into the one day when a gift of any kind ought to express optimism and respect within a relationship: married or partnered, straight or gay. It is the one day for a special gift of intimacy: roses, chocolate, tickets to a baseball game,  jewelry –  or even a beautiful poem, like the bouquet Word Woman Rosemerry Trommer penned for the holiday. And like any true gift, these poem occupy a space between the author, the giver, and the receiver, like a meaningful conversation – or a kiss.

In Rosemerry’s words:” ‘In Times of Great Darkness’ is a classic love poem and ‘Code,’ a geeky love poem; ‘Benediction’ was written to celebrate the marriage (and meeting of two great minds) of Craig Childs and Daiva Chesonis; ‘Loving the Broken Heart’ mourns the loss of a beloved friend who used to send Valentines.”

Heart in My Hand, courtesy Rosemerry Trommer.

In Times of Great Darkness

I want to do for you
what the sun does for me—
coax you to come
outside, to breathe in
the golden air.
I want to warm you
and enter you,
fill you with brilliance,
make your muscles melt,
make your mind shush.
I want to prepare for you
luminous paths
that span across deep space,
thaw any part of you
that feels frozen,
find any cracks
and slip shine into them.
I want to intensify
your shadow
so you might better know
your own shape.
I want to encourage you
to open, wider, wider,
want to teach you
to write your name
in light.

inspired by a line from Wayne Muller

I do not love you in 0s and 1s,
some straightforward proposition—
our love, my dear, is gray, is .772,
refuses to be simplified, reduced.
There is maybe in us. And perhaps.
Wouldn’t it be easier if love were like math—
a logical answer we could arrive at,
with binary digits to map it all out.
Instead, a word, a tone, a should
makes what is certain slip off its string
and the bits and values keep changing.
Somewhere between the 0 and 1
is a meadow where we might watch the moon,
a garden where outlandish fruits still grow,
a mountain we will never stop climbing.

  for Craig and Daiva

Tonight love is a stray dog
hungry and lean, manhood intact,
who wanders to your front yard,
drawn by the smell of food
and also to the laughter,
the quiet guitar, the poems.
He laps at spilled wine.
He nuzzles your hand.
He curls into the lap
of everyone who will receive him.

And though you can’t fathom
where he came from, can’t name him,
can’t say what will happen tomorrow,
tonight, love finds a place
on your bench and nestles in,
refuses to leave, insists
on being at the center of things.

Meanwhile, overhead,
Jupiter and Saturn, the two biggest worlds
in our solar system, prepare to conjoin.
Meanwhile, all around there is howling.
But love doesn’t make any noise,
no, he is content to listen to your voices
telling the story of how it all began.
He is content to be here,
content to let you turn another page,
while at your feet, he stretches, settles,
makes your home his home.

Loving the Broken Heart

Every year the red or pink envelopes would arrive,
three of them tucked into the post office box—
one for my daughter, one for my son, and one
for me. Sally always remembered. My children
were, perhaps, a bit cavalier about the cards—
they’d read them and smile and set them aside.
But I had an inkling of the longing to give love
inside them. How beautiful her heart.
How lucky I felt to be chosen by her.
How lucky to return her love.

This year, only bills in the post office box
and catalogs for sheets and seeds and clothes.
And the part of me who knows she is gone
shrugs as if I should just go on. But the part
of me who misses her longs today to find
her familiar script on a red envelope. I know
that it’s unreasonable. That doesn’t stop hope.

I tell the part that misses her that it’s okay
to grieve. That it’s okay to feel empty today.
That it’s okay to want to believe in miracles.
I love the part of me that misses her—I love
how it insists on remembering this gift:
Such a wonder to be loved by someone,
such a marvel to love them back.

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