Been listening to Whitman all day. Feeling angry and impassioned and inspired.
And I found out that two of my friends who I work with are dating, and I started describing the moment a few weeks ago when I suspected there was something between them, and she said to me, “You should write about that.”
And I did.
Because poetry, like love, can’t be put in a box. It can’t be understood with our certitudes and pious explanations.
It just is. It’s endlessly mysterious, endlessly real.
Here’s my poem.
LOVE AND ITS WAYS
There is a way lovers have of being together
That announces itself even in discretion.
Here at the celebration of a friend’s wedding anniversary
I see two friends, a man and a woman, casually talking.
They are not yet known, their love is undiscovered,
But I see it.
The fluttering of lashes, the coiled tenseness of bodies,
The high ringing tone in her laughter,
His wistful yet restrained expression.
How they lean into one another,
Having not yet fallen,
On the verge of falling.
And I know that they both know it
Though no words have been spoken.
And I celebrate the hesitant glances,
The ripening affections,
Even as I celebrate the mature love of my two friends
Who today are renewing their vows
Who have been married for twenty-five years
For love is to be celebrated and all love is a celebration
It does not control or impose
It does not enslave or oppress whatever disagrees with its own spirit
It does not violate the integrity of the one who is loved
But loves it, celebrates its uniqueness,
Raises it to be what it was made to become.