The Witch’s Kiss

His head, lost deep within a rhythmic book,
Turned her way, and with one “hello”
His thoughts she read, his future she took;
To her, his life he would bestow.

Her steel gray eyes held tight his piercing gaze,
As she chanted sweet nothings in the breeze;
This lit a fire deep within and set his heart ablaze,
And he went to her, as though captured in a seize.

The caldron by her side, he missed;
She drew her mouth to his, and pressure she applied,
But her lips were spelling while they kissed,
And when they parted, he saw her as his bride.

He had become hers on Halloween,
And never again, would he be seen.

∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞ ∞

Love Letter from Robert Browning

To Elizabeth Barrett Browning:

. . . would I, if I could, supplant one of any of the affections that I know to have taken root in you – that great and solemn one, for instance, I feel that if I could get myself remade, as if turned to gold, I WOULD not even then desire to become more than the mere setting to that diamond you must always wear.

The regard and esteem you now give me, in this letter, and which I press to my heart and bow my head upon, is all I can take and all too embarrassing, using all my gratitude.

– Robert Browning

(1812 – 1889)

Love Letter by Julia Lee Booker – July 24, 1940

I cannot get that beautiful afternoon out of my head, above me where I lay the grass was silhouetted against the blue of the heavens, small clouds were rushing past as the wind drove on an endless journey. Then close to me was the most lovely of all, your soft hair against my cheek, your kisses so cool and unearthly and my happiness was so great.

Romantic Lines

“He knew that when he kissed this girl, and forever wed his unutterable visions to her perishable breath, his mind would never romp again like the mind of God. So he waited, listening for a moment longer to the tuning fork that had been struck upon a star. Then he kissed her. At his lips’ touch she blossomed like a flower and the incarnation was complete.”

F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

Love Letter to F. Scott Fitzgerald from Zelda Sayre – Spring 1919

Scott — there’s nothing in the world I want but you — and your precious love — All the material things are nothing. I’d just hate to live a sordid, colorless existence — because you’d soon love me less — and less — and I’d do anything — anything — to keep your heart for my own — I don’t want to live — I want to love first, and live incidentally — Why don’t you feel that I’m waiting — I’ll come to you, Lover, when you’re ready — Don’t don’t ever think of the things you can’t give me — You’ve trusted me with the dearest heart of all — and it’s so damn much more than anybody else in all the world has ever had —

How can you think deliberately of life without me — If you should die — O Darling — darling Scott — It’d be like going blind. I know I would, too, — I’d have no purpose in life — just a pretty — decoration. Don’t you think I was made for you? I feel like you had me ordered — and I was delivered to you — to be worn — I want you to wear me, like a watch — charm or button hole bouquet — to the world. And then, when we’re alone, I want to help — to know that you can’t do anything without me.

I’m glad you wrote Mamma. It was such a nice sincere letter — and mine to St. Paul was very evasive and rambling. I’ve never, in all my life, been able to say anything to people older than me — Somehow I just instinctively avoid personal things with them — even my family. Kids are so much nicer.

Love Letter to Zelda Sayre from F. Scott Fitzgerald – Spring 1919

Sweetheart,

Please, please don’t be so depressed — We’ll be married soon, and then these lonesome nights will be over forever — and until we are, I am loving, loving every tiny minute of the day and night — Maybe you won’t understand this, but sometimes when I miss you most, it’s hardest to write — and you always know when I make myself — Just the ache of it all — and I can’t tell you. If we were together, you’d feel how strong it is — you’re so sweet when you’re melancholy. I love your sad tenderness — when I’ve hurt you — That’s one of the reasons I could never be sorry for our quarrels — and they bothered you so — Those dear, dear little fusses, when I always tried so hard to make you kiss and forget —

Love Letter: Victor Hugo

To: Adele Foucher

My dearest,

When two souls, which have sought each other for, however long in the throng, have finally found each other … a union, fiery and pure as they themselves are … begins on earth and continues forever in heaven.

This union is love, true love, … a religion, which deifies the loved one, whose life comes from devotion and passion, and for which the greatest sacrifices are the sweetest delights.

This is the love which you inspire in me … Your soul is made to love with the purity and passion of angels; but perhaps it can only love another angel, in which case I must tremble with apprehension.

Yours forever,
Victor Hugo (1821)

Cupid’s Arrow

Artists often depict Cupid, the ancient Roman god of love, as a winged baby that carries a golden bow and a quiver of arrows. He inflicts love and passion to his victims and has become an iconic symbol of Valentine’s Day. Cupid is the son of Mercury, the winged messenger of the gods, and Venus, the goddess of love.

In his 1482 painting, La Primavera, Sandro Botticelli positions a blindfolded Cupid above Venus, shooting an arrow.

Shakespeare said this about Cupid’s blindness in A Midsummer Night’s Dream:

Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind
And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.
Nor hath love’s mind of any judgement taste;
Wings and no eyes figure unheedy haste.
And therefore is love said to be a child
Because in choice he is so oft beguiled

Are you ever struck by Cupid’s arrow? Sometimes, it’s hard to tell at first. He doesn’t always aim for dead center. The love arrow can graze or nick the skin. In such cases, platonic thoughts shift to romantic ones. Friendship may transform into something more. Like the act of wading into the water to acclimate before a swim, love can ease its way into life. Other times, when it’s a bull’s eye hit to the heart, persons dive into the deep end. We have often compared the highs from intense romance to that of a drug. Love can resemble symptoms of addiction — euphoria, craving, dependence, withdrawal and relapse. Cupid’s arrow not only affects the heart, it can overtake the mind. Neuroscience has linked passionate love with intense changes in emotion and attention, and the reduced ability to control attention. When head-over-heals in love, thoughts drift to the object of affection, sometimes obsessively.

Pablo Neruda describes the feelings of being driven to distraction by love in his poem Love Sonnet XI:

I crave your mouth, your voice, your hair.
Silent and starving, I prowl through the streets.
Bread does not nourish me, dawn disrupts me, all day
I hunt for the liquid measure of your steps.
I hunger for your sleek laugh,
your hands the color of a savage harvest,
hunger for the pale stones of your fingernails,
I want to eat your skin like a whole almond.
I want to eat the sunbeam flaring in your lovely body,
the sovereign nose of your arrogant face,
I want to eat the fleeting shade of your lashes,
and I pace around hungry, sniffing the twilight,
hunting for you, for your hot heart,
like a puma in the barrens of Quitratue.

Whether you’re ever hit by Cupid’s arrow or not, may love, in all its potential and varieties, capture your heart and thoughts on Valentine’s Day.

Basking in Simplicity

When I think of you, I become the keys of a piano, the strings of a guitar, the high notes of a song. Lyrics form a love story between parallel worlds, yours and mine. Outlines of separate existences stayed in their lanes for the longest time. Then one day our paths crossed, collided. From that day forth, our stories, our hearts, merged into one. But epic love tales are never that easy. First, we had to shatter our worlds, break each other’s hearts.

In the beginning, the complexity of the collision seemed simple. What could be easier than falling in love? Loving you was effortless; it was a journey of destiny. Living for one another felt natural. I not only lived for you but would have died for you, and you for me. The years passed, and so did the simplicity. The intricate workings of circumstance gave way to mixed emotions, to contradictions. 

Your name on my lips, sweet and sharp. A love song or a battle call? I’ve since forgotten what I began fighting for. Did I attack in the name of love? Was I driven mad by fear and trepidation? Protecting myself, I laced my loving words with poison. Your mediating skills went into full swing until you could no longer defend yourself against my toxic thoughts and pointed swings. Pushed by an apparition, I fell down a dark rabbit hole. When you couldn’t reach me, you came tumbling after. You couldn’t save yourself, because you couldn’t leave me. So I took you down another level, straight into the wretched place I dwelled, in the mud. Here, I made you get your hands dirty and rub them on me; I needed to feel your body on mine, even in contempt. It was when I brought you down as low as you could possibly go that I finally saw how much you love me, how much you’ve always loved me, and how much you will always love me.

In the end, there’s something shattering and humbling about waging a war with the one you love most. There are no victors, only lessons. For me, living through this dark night of the soul embarked a spiritual awakening. This enlightenment came by way of you.

And so here we are, basking in simplicity. We love effortlessly, for it is our destiny. We live and breathe for one another, for that’s the natural order. I live for you, and would die for you, and you for me. Nothing has changed, and yet everything has changed. Our union, like our love, is infinite.

Magic Everywhere

From the 1920s
To the 2020s

Wishing you all a safe and happy Halloween!

October 31, the eve of November 1, was the last night of the year in the ancient Celtic calendar, an evening when folks celebrated the end of their fruitful summer. The Celts of Northern Europe threw parties and built bonfires with hopes of helping the sun through the winter. Their winters were cold and harsh. The editors of Reader’s Digest remarked their winters “called to mind the chill and blackness of the grave, and so it was a time when ghosts would walk, and supernatural spirits, warlocks, and witches would hold their revels.”

Halloween today is a time to suit up, open a bottle of wine or champaign, and put some fresh ribs or veggies on the grill. It’s a time to dance, bake cookies, and try to scare the living daylights out of anyone who comes knocking at your door. We suggest you mask-up, break out the lantern you made from a hollowed-out pumpkin or turnip, turn up the music, and pour out the chocolate bars you bought on sale at your local grocer. When folks come over to see what’s happening, wish them health and happiness in the chilly months ahead, and remember John Martin’s line, “There’s Magic everywhere.”

New Again

Through new love’s eyes fall leaves never fall. The first snow is true love’s first kiss. Spring blossoms stay in perpetual bloom. Summer’s rays shine golden the whole year through. Passion inflames the senses. Life smells sweet, and the world glows with light and love. A gentle graze from a lover’s palm is like an electrical spark to the heart. The sharing of bodies is the imprinting of souls. Ahh, the fireworks of new love. There’s nothing quite like living beneath the expanse of new love’s sky.

October 31, 2020 offers a blue moon, a rare event, particularly since full moons on Halloween occur on a 19-year cycle. Author Stephen King once wrote, “Sooner or later, everything old is new again.” Let’s apply this message from the “King of Horror” to love. It’s Halloween, and we all agree, 2020 has been a hard year, so why not treat each other with a little extra love?

Research shows that happy couples use the word “comfortable” to describe their relationships. Comfortable may sound less than thrilling, but it doesn’t have to be. Old companions may arouse the sensations of new love with the bonus of familiarity and skilled precision. Long and savory kisses can easily awaken sleeping desires. All it takes is for one to make the first move, to reach out and touch the other. When seasoned couples endeavor to walk hand in hand, to put on music and ask for the next dance in the living room, or to ask how they might treat each other on Halloween, what is old will reignite and become new again.

Madly

I am madly in love with you. ​ Everywhere I go, everywhere I look, I see you. ​The mundane is magical. Waiting in line at the grocery store is now an opportunity to check for a message from you, and you do not disappoint. Your sweet offerings are abundant. Common city pigeons have transformed into messengers of love, every “coo” a sweet “I love you.”  A shamrock growing out of a crack in a paved parking lot stops me dead in my tracks for a moment of splendor. To me, its delicate three leaves are no less extraordinary than four. My feet are light as I skip along the street, in a groove, feeling the beat. I’m playing our song—songs, we have so many! Beneath the nighttime sky, I tend to choose a tune that brings our bodies together in a slow and sensual dance. As the sun sets early and darkness falls, my spirits rise. ​In my mind I am already crawling into bed with you. ​ ​Privy ​to my thoughts, ​the streetlights wink as I approach. ​My mouth flashes a Cheshire cat grin, and I nod my head to them. ​They understand the electricity between us. 

It’s all the little things about you that make me ​desire and love ​​you so. You’ve a thousand good qualities, all wrapped up in​ ​one ​delightful package​. ​ ​T​he unique gift of you​ includes more than your handsome good looks​. ​You come with a warm heart and a strong obligation to serve ​others. You’re not plagued with depressive thoughts or addictive behaviors. In many ways you lead a simple life, and that simplicity adds to your calmness and depth of wisdom. When you gaze at me with your soul-piercing eyes​ ​it’s a sprinkling of stardust ​on​ my psyche. ​You make me want to greet every single person I meet, but I’ll leave that to you. You’re good with people. They always want more of you, and yet you keep them wanting. You share yourself, your private self, with so few. ​Sometimes I wonder if I’m the only person who truly knows you. One thing is for sure, I love you like no other.