true people true people

how do i know love?

I know many measurements of time,
I’ve witnessed the difference between frozen resin and bread leavening.
And I know melody and I know rhyme
by the contrast of music and a bird’s rhetoric,
And I know the feelings of sharp, pinch, and burn,
because I have experienced each, in their turn.
But how do I know that this feeling is love?

I’ve read fairy tales about doves whose tails were caught in crosswinds and tossed about by gales because they were too frail.

And I’ve sung ballads about roses whose petals were pallid so they hid their aromas behind a threshold of thorns.

And windtorn willow wisps predict wicked sorrows for those that are born from midnight trysts or from parents who fornicate like forlorn narcissists.

So I know that love exists but it does not seem to consist of only heavenly bliss.

I scorn every Resurrection Myth because my senses insist that this is all there is
Which makes these few brief moments with you sting like Romeo’s poisonous kiss.

And whether we face doom or destiny, gloom or ecstasy,
I’ll ponder the question that I keep asking myself endlessly:

How do I know that this feeling is love?
How do I even begin to describe…?

If my love for you were an old oak tree,
its roots would run under rivers,
score stones, and flesh out forests.

If I could snatch Orion’s belt out of the night-sky and knit you a celestial crown, I would fend off the attack of the remaining Zodiacs just to make you feel like the Queen of the town.

If I could build you a sand castle, I would smelt it into glass with the warmth of my hands, so that when the Ocean no longer breaks upon land with its aquatic song you will be able to shatter the Kingdom that I wrought for you with the ringing of a gong.

If I could take the place of Prometheus or defeat Theseus in a fight, I would hold the world in place so you would forever remain in light.

And if I could write you a love poem, I would.

by Michael Cody Clarke
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