Friday, August 21, 2009

D.H. Lawrence & Love Poetry

Thinking about how you can be an overlooked, underrated poet of the past and yet have written some of the most stunning poems ever written. Lawrence isn't underrated as a novelist, but as a poet, he's not talked about much. The poetry of his that I looked into didn't impress me, so I moved on in my restless self-directed study. Recently, this poem was brought to my attention, which I think is one of the most beautiful love poems I've ever read (of course, as a rose fancier, I would be captivated by a poem that combines love and roses):

Gloire de Dijon

    WHEN she rises in the morning
    I linger to watch her;
    She spreads the bath-cloth underneath the window
    And the sunbeams catch her
    Glistening white on the shoulders,
    While down her sides the mellow
    Golden shadow glows as
    She stoops to the sponge, and her swung breasts
    Sway like full-blown
    Gloire de Dijon roses.

    She drips herself with water, and her shoulders
    Glisten as silver; they crumble up
    Like wet and falling roses, and I listen
    For the sluicing of their rain-dishevelled petals.
    In the window full of sunlight
    Concentrates her golden shadow
    Fold on fold, until it glows as
    Mellow as the glory roses.

    D. H. Lawrence

Love poetry is so hard to write. If Lawrence weren't a first-rate poet, how could he have written such a beautiful love poem? I will be re-thinking his work and getting reacquainted with it.
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