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Born in the US, raised on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, lived in Italy, the US, and Canada. Lover of language, travel, colour, and the natural world.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Given that yesterday was love day, i wanted to share this poem, which I absolutely adore. It is by Lisel Mueller, and is about the relationship between Johannes Brahms and Clara Schumann. I love it because it speaks to the tendency that society has to hold every relationship up to the magnifying lens of spoken and unspoken attitudes about what love is, and what it should be; how it should be expressed, and between whom. I have found in my own life that love comes rarely, that it often rises out of the most unlikely places, and that no one, except possibly the two people experiencing it, can truly understand it completely.


 by Lisel Mueller

The modern biographers worry
"how far it went," their tender friendship.
They wonder just what it means
when he writes he thinks of her constantly,
his guardian angel, beloved friend.
The modern biographers ask
the rude, irrelevant question
of our age, as if the event
of two bodies meshing together
establishes the degree of love,
forgetting how softly Eros walked
in the nineteenth century, how a hand
held overlong or a gaze anchored
in someone's eyes could unseat a heart,
and nuances of address not known
in our egalitarian language
could make the redolent air
tremble and shimmer with the heat
of possibility. Each time I hear
the Intermezzi, sad
and lavish in their tenderness,
I imagine the two of them
sitting in a garden
among late-blooming roses
and dark cascades of leaves,
letting the landscape speak for them,
leaving us nothing to overhear.

1 comment:

  1. Very nice choice, Ariana, and thanks for putting it up.