I couldn't resist after Fa posted two of my favorites, so here are three more delightfully unsappy love poems, the kind that transcend the usual Hallmark-y mush... and worth reading on a day such as this.
This first two are by Thomas Hardy (1840-1928). I adore this first one -- isn't this just the way it so often happens? You can just hear his pitch and tempo escalating as his heart gradually gets away from him...
On Monday night I closed my door,
And thought you were not as heretofore,
And little cared if we met no more.
I seemed on Tuesday night to trace
Something beyond mere commonplace
In your ideas, and heart, and face.
On Wednesday I did not opine
Your life would ever be one with mine,
Though if it were we should well combine.
On Thursday noon I liked you well,
And fondly felt that we must dwell
Not far apart, whatever befell.
On Friday it was with a thrill
In gazing towards your distant vill
I owned you were my dear one still.
I saw you wholly to my mind
On Saturday -- even one who shrined
All that was best of womankind.
As wing-clipt sea-gull for the sea
On Sunday night I longed for thee,
Without whom life were waste to me!
* * * * * * *
Little head against my shoulder,
Shy at first, then somewhat bolder,
Till she, with a timid quaver,
Yielded to the kiss I gave her;
But, she sighed.
That there mingled with her feeling
Some sad thought she was concealing
-- Not that she had ceased to love me,
None on earth she set above me;
But she sighed.
She could not disguise a passion,
Dread, or doubt, in weakest fashion
If she tried:
Nothing seemed to hold us sundered,
Hearts were victors; so I wondered
Why she sighed.
Afterwards I knew her throughly,
And she loved me staunchly, truly,
Till she died;
But she never made confession
Why, at that first sweet concession,
She had sighed.
It was in our May, remember;
And though now I near November,
Till my appointed change, unfretting,
Sometimes I sit half regretting
That she sighed.
* * * * * * *
And this last one is for some young fellows I know... and you will know who you are (hint: bare feet and ponytails).
Delight in Disorder
by Robert Herrick (1591-1674)
A sweet disorder in the dress
Kindles in clothes a wantonness.
A lawn about the shoulders thrown
Into a fine distraction;
An erring lace, which here and there
Enthralls the crimson stomacher;
A cuff neglectful, and thereby
Ribbons to flow confusedly;
A winning wave, deserving note,
In the tempestuous petticoat;
A careless shoestring, in whose tie
I see a wild civility;
Do more bewitch me than when art
Is too precise in every part.