KNEW, DID NOT LOVE; LOVED, DID NOT KNOW

The only purpose of this bird
Hidden from you by the trees
Is that its signature be heard—
And one sharp note will do,
Gallant among the melodies,
Announcing its joy to you.

You sing to birds with human songs in vain.
You have edges but not a center.
Shadows of shadows sing shadow songs in your brain.
The smell and sound of the rain may enter
But not the rain.

2 Comments

  1. noochinator said,

    August 22, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    Speaking of “LOVED, DID NOT KNOW,” Quentin Crisp said something wonderful about how we delude ourselves about the qualities of a new love object:

    “Where we are led to think we will find strength, we shall discover force; where we hope for ruthlessness, we shall unearth spite; and when we think we are clinging desperately to a rock, it is falling upon us.”

    (Quoted by Nigel Kelly in his book Quentin Crisp: The Profession of Being)

    • thomasbrady said,

      August 24, 2014 at 1:28 pm

      Crisp obviously knew his Socrates: love is to want, to want to know, but love does not know. Yet, one must not be too cynical about love…love is not blind, not ignorant, but knows a great more than the non-lover (at least according to Soc.) precisely because of the lover’s great desire to know…the rock crushes the non-lover; the lover, however, gets out of its way, even as he clings to it…


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