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Friday, August 19, 2016

Short Poem - Arthur Gregor

When eyes pass by trembling with presence,
hold on to the urge for possession of
the love without which you must learn
to remain content; then love with all you possess
that shadow wherein hovers a promise
like a young swallow in a thicket of trees.










If you seek to possess love, you must learn to be content without it, posits Arthur Gregor in his appropriately named short poem.  What I especially love about this poem is the aura of nervousness it cultivates.  Eyes tremble, love passes in shadows, and is as flighty as a bird in a thicket of trees.  There is also a wonderful sense of urgency to it all.  The subject wants so desperately to love those eyes "trembling with presence" that the narrator must urge caution.  Do not seek to possess love. 

I especially love the lines, "hold on to the urge for possession of / the love without which you must learn / to remain content."  If you put all of your happiness into possessing those eyes trembling with presence, you will end up ruined.  You must be whole, you must learn to remain content without love.  Instead, Gregor says, love the shadow of a promise of love.  Be ever hopeful of love rather than possessive is my takeaway.  Really, I simply adore the language of the poem.  It is beautiful and sometimes, that is enough.

1 comment:

  1. I have a similar response to the last lines of Browning's Two in the Campagna, which is also about the impossibility of fulfilment: 'Only I discern/Infinite passion, and the pain/Of finite hearts that yearn.

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