Friday, February 12, 2010

In Time for Valentine's Day

This is one of my favorite love poems. A dear friend shared it with me years ago and I was utterly charmed by it. It's not your typical love poetry but I hope you like it.

Love Poem
by John Frederick Nims

My clumsiest dear, whose hands shipwreck vases,
At whose quick touch all glasses chip and ring,
Whose palms are bulls in china, burs in linen,
And have no cunning with any soft thing

Except all ill-at-ease fidgeting people:
The refugee uncertain at the door
You make at home; deftly you steady
The drunk clambering on his undulant floor.

Unpredictable dear, the taxi drivers' terror,
Shrinking from far headlights pale as a dime
Yet leaping before apopleptic streetcars—
Misfit in any space. And never on time.

A wrench in clocks and the solar system. Only
With words and people and love you move at ease;
In traffic of wit expertly maneuver
And keep us, all devotion, at your knees.

Forgetting your coffee spreading on our flannel,
Your lipstick grinning on our coat.
So gaily in love's unbreakable heaven
Our souls on glory of spilt bourbon float.

Be with me, darling, early and late. Smash glasses—
I will study wry music for your sake.
For should your hands drop white and empty
All the toys of the world would break.


g-man said...

Come on now Trini...
You are not THAT bad are you?

Craig said...

This is utterly charming. Thank you.

My own dear wife has certain, um, idiosyncracies, which simultaneously exasperate and charm me. And when I'm thinking clearly, I realize that there is a wonderful symmetry in our marriage, in that regard - she forbears me at least as much as I do her.

But heck - that utter 'humanity' is part of the joy of the whole thing, ain't it?

Thanks again. . .

S said...

Oh that is just awesome, I love that poem!
Happy V day to you, Lime!

Susan said...

Very nice. Thanks for sharing :)
My 55 is up right HERE

Brian Miller said...

ha. wonderful poem. hope you have a great valentine's!

anthonynorth said...

Beautifully done.
You'll find mine here.

jinksy said...

Proves love is blind...

Suldog said...

I think that's lovely. The last line, of course, says it all.

For some reason, it reminds me of the Tom Lehrer song, "She's My Girl"...

Sharks gotta swim, and bats gotta fly,
I gotta love one woman till I die.
To Ed or Dick or Bob
She may be just a slob,
But to me, well,
She's my girl.

In winter the bedroom is one large ice cube,
And she squeezes the toothpaste from the middle of the tube.
Her hairs in the sink
Have driven me to drink,
But she's my girl, she's my girl, she's my girl,
And I love her.

The girl that I lament for,
The girl my money's spent for,
The girl my back is bent for,
The girl I owe the rent for,
The girl I gave up Lent for
Is the girl that heaven meant for me.

So though for breakfast she makes coffee that tastes like shampoo,
I come home for dinner and get peanut butter stew,
Or if I'm in luck,
It's broiled hockey puck,
But, oh well, what the hell,
She's my girl,
And I love her.

Cricket said...

Great one. I'll add it to my own list. I was just going to link to this one of my personal faves, but since Sul went ahead and included full text, wotthehell?

To My Valentine

More than a catbird hates a cat,
Or a criminal hates a clue,
Or the Axis hates the United States,
That's how much I love you.

I love you more than a duck can swim,
And more than a grapefruit squirts,
I love you more than a gin rummy is a bore,
And more than a toothache hurts.

As a shipwrecked sailor hates the sea,
Or a juggler hates a shove,
As a hostess detests unexpected guests,
That's how much you I love.

I love you more than a wasp can sting,
And more than the subway jerks,
I love you as much as a beggar needs a crutch,
And more than a hangnail irks.

I swear to you by the stars above,
And below, if such there be,
As the High Court loathes perjurious oathes,
That's how you're loved by me.

- Ogden Nash

Happy Valentine's, Lime.

Cocotte said...

Happy Valentine's Day, Lime!

Mona said...

That is funny :D

Happy Valentine Lime!

Anonymous said...

It is a good job that love is blind or there would be many lonely folk on the the poem, new to me.