Tuesday, April 2, 2013

A Jack Gilbert poem and thoughts worth considering about love and marriage

On Thursday, I have old friends coming to stay with me for several days. They've been married a long time. Perhaps they've known the wisdom in this Jack Gilbert poem from the beginning. But maybe not. Maybe they stumbled upon it in the ruins, parched and out of water, cursing under a relentless sun.

Tear It Down

by Jack Gilbert

We find out the heart only by dismantling what
the heart knows. By redefining the morning,
we find a morning that comes just after darkness.
We can break through marriage into marriage.
By insisting on love we spoil it, get beyond
affection and wade mouth-deep into love.
We must unlearn the constellations to see the stars.
But going back toward childhood will not help.
The village is not better than Pittsburgh.
Only Pittsburgh is more than Pittsburgh.
Rome is better than Rome in the same way the sound
of racoon tongues licking the inside walls
of the garbage tub is more than the stir
of them in the muck of the garbage. Love is not
enough. We die and are put into the earth forever.
We should insist while there is still time. We must
eat through the wildness of her sweet body already
in our bed to reach the body within the body.

- See more at: http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/19356#sthash.JFty2bJN.dpuf


Ms. Moon said...

I wonder if poets make the best lovers?

Elizabeth said...

I imagine Jack Gilbert was a sensational lover.