Today I am proud to "copy&pastry" from masterwordsmith-unplugged; like her, I seldom try to fathom the unfathomable thing called love, but here follow TWO posts, once current, the other wanolde like Desi-lah; at 64 like DSAI but feel 40sex!:)
" A few years later when I was a grown up, I met someone who touched a deeper place in my heart and it was one of those moments when you realize that love at first sight is possible..."
What is this elusive thing called 'love'?
For the greater part of my life as an educator, I have counselled many teenagers and young adults about boy-girl relationships and many have asked me how to know when it is the 'right' one.
My answer: You just know. Just as you will know when it is NOT the right one. A bit simplistic but to me, it is true.
I cannot deny that I grew up reading fairy tale romances such as Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella etc and whilst I do not subscribe to those sexist stereotypes that a woman needs a man to make her complete and all that jazz, I strongly believe that somewhere out there is someone meant for each one of us.
And when you meet that someone, you just know. Yes, I am one of those who saw stars, fireworks and my legs turned to jelly, heart throbbed at an earth-shattering speed and went all giddy and lovey-dovey from henceforth.
The initial stage would be heavenly and in time, things may not roll out as smoothly. When the crunch comes, a love that lasts will see the couple walking down the aisle to exchange vows that would bind them for life till death do them part.
The greatest tragedy of life is when one meets that someone, and then in a moment of uncertainty or by a cruel twist of fate of destiny, loses that someone either in a tiff/misunderstanding/parental objection/peer influence etc or walks away etc and then marries someone else either on the rebound or because of poor judgement or thought he/she was making the right decision then. Even if it was love at first sight, it was likely a love that was not strong enough to withstand the challenges faced.
However, I am not saying that one could not be happy with that decision.
Happiness is a state of mind, I believe. It is a choice that we make to will ourselves to be happy by making rational choices. However, far above all that, the fact remains that had we married that special someone, things might not would have turned out more beautifully. So, each of us is responsible for the choices we make in our lives.
Regardless of our circumstances, it is our individual responsibility to make the best of our decision,to love,cherish and to nurture the one with whom we have chosen to share our lives.
At the same time, I have also come across some who have never fallen in love before and married out of obligation or a host of other reasons. They often ask me, "What is it like to fall in love? How does it feel? How do you know?" etc etc. Too often, our perception of love is based on what we have been exposed to in the mass media and literature or even words.
Some of my friends/relatives in match-made marriages are in marital bliss because in time, they learnt to love that someone and eventually fell in love with their spouses. Amazingly, some of these people I know are so loving even in their old age!!! That is the power of love for you.
One cannot deny that along the road of life, sometimes one may come across someone who has a strong magnetic pull that comes with shared interests or inclinations. It is up to each individual to step on the brakes lest to prevent any untoward incidents and to transform that into a friendship that lasts and built on a platform of shared values or ethics. No disclosure is encouraged and yet, one just knows in unspoken words or even in the absence of body language. Much as one may run away, the fact is there. The attraction and magnetism.
However, I firmly believe that if one really loves....one will not have eyes or the heart for anyone else. That is because the acres of one's heart have been devoted to the love of his life.
No matter how strong the magnetism, nothing will happen because fulfilment has been found in the love of his/her life and there is no space for anyone else regardless of the strength of that magnetism or attraction.
Yet, one is human and prone to failings. In a moment of weakness, one may buckle and a Freudian slip here and there or when both lock glances across the room or the look in one's eyes or the tone of voice could reveal far more than what was intended. And that is the time to step on the brakes, failing which it could ignite something dangerous.
And perhaps, the lack of will-power or self control or even the need for validation as a man/woman could propel the start of an affair.
Having counselled so many from various backgrounds, I can attest to the fact that any broken marriage has long-lasting consequences on the partners but more so on the children and their individual marital status in years to come.
In closing, I just wish to say that yes, one can fall in love at first sight, swoon at the sight or knowledge of one who takes our breath away but at the end of the day - rational and responsible choices are vital in maintaining stability in one's marriage and family. A love that lasts need not be one tailored to story-book romances. He need not be the type to bring you roses or to whisper sweet nothings into your ear. But, a love that lasts is one who loves regardless of whether you are fat or thin, hairy or bald, beautiful or wrinkled...simply put - a love that endures in all circumstances!
But is it that easy?
What are your views and or observations, dear readers?
And now, on the s'xth day of CNY, here's some memory/ies recalled by Desi and several esteemedreaders wit' their heartfool feedback from the early years:)
Sunday, June 19, 2005
Love Is a Many-Splendour’d ThingDesiderata.english
Love is a common theme of poets and playrights, and why not? This many-splendour’d thing called “love” is a constant companion in our daily lives, from our Birth nursed on Mother’s love, through teenage innocent “first love” experience, then later to the more complicated and convoluted affairs of adults -- involving lovers’ quarrels, triangular fistfights, consuming forbidden fruits and being consumed by their aftermath, often led the green-eyed monster to tragedy and Death.
Many of us have enjoyed watching Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare (1564-1616) performed on stage or at the cinema or via TV. Indeed, there have been variations of this great love story by the Bard, including Spanish, Chinese, and even a Malay, adaptations which I had seen on television. Most could easily associate the lines which encapsulate the tragedy of the play:
“What’s in a name?
That which we call a rose
By any other word would smell as sweet."
Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet meet and fall in love in Shakespeare's lyrical tale of "star-cross'd" lovers, unfortunately hailing from two warring families. Here Juliet tells Romeo that a name is an artificial and meaningless convention, and that she loves the person who is called "Montague", not the Montague name or family. Romeo valiantly rejects his family name and vows, as Juliet asks, to "deny (his) father" and instead be "new baptized" as Juliet's lover.
There are certain occasions when love-lorn teenagers (the sender) would “borrow” the works of great poets to convey their feelings to their love partners (the recipient). Those informed in English literature would know of the great love story of Robert Browning (1812-1889) and his wife, Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861). Many can easily recite some lines from the following:
How much do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of every day’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints – I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life! – and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.
The last two lines form the defining climax which telescopes all the preceding expressions into a gem of a conclusion -- what many star-cross’d lovers would have felt and would have been proud to have said it in Browning’s unique way. It is again another human emotion as perennial as the grass – true love that gives forth a sworn, undying devotion of one human being to another. But common mortals like us often expressed in prose via cliches such as: I’ll love you till the end of time; I’ll follow you till the end of the earth, or I’ll love you until the end of the world; I’d give up my life for you; ... the list could go on and on, but none will ever come close enough to Browning’s immortal closing.
And from another of her well quoted poems, a stanza is reproduced here:
If thou must love me, let it be for naught
Except for love’s sake only. Do not say
“I love her for her smile – her look – her way
Of speaking gently – for a trick of thought
That falls in well with mine, and certes brought
A sense of pleasant ease on such a day” ...
And from the other significant half, Robert Browning comes:
So the year’s done with!
(Love me for ever!)
All March begun with,
May-wreaths that bound me
June needs must sever;
Now snows fall round me,
Quenching’ June’s fever –
(Love me for ever!)
So love is a common theme in poetry in whatever language, and why not? We humans need love as much as we need air and water to survive, from the day we were born until the day we die, that’s an inescapable truth. Love is the first emotion that a baby would encounter on entering this world, for the mother’s caressing arms would have been the child’s first human experience, and it is one full of motherly love and care. So throughout life, a human being is fed on love – maybe of various kinds, ranging from parent, puppy, unrequited, sweetheart, spouse, between a gay couple, to intoxicating “first love” between teenagers, to stolen “love”, or lust, for the married man (woman too, in this age of equality!) in the arms of a secret mistress (or Cassanova)!
Rhythm and rhyme are characteristic in successful songs, the lyrics of some are so well composed they indeed qualify as “poetry”. Those in this league include compositions by Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel, like “Sound of Silence” (And in the naked light I saw/ Ten thousand people maybe more …) and “Bridge Over Troubled Water” (When you’re weary, feeling small/ When tears are in your eyes/ I’ll dry them all/ I’m on your side… ), and of course, innumerable ones by (the late) John Lennon and (Sir) Paul McCartney of The Beatles. For me, from childhood the lines from Beautiful Dreamer by Stephen Foster have indelibly been etched in my mind, and I reproduce here two stanzas of what I consider one of the best love poems ever composed:
Beautiful dreamer, wake unto me
Starlight and dew-drops are waiting for thee;
Sounds of the rude world heard in the day,
Lull’d by the moonlight have all pass’d away.
Beautiful dreamer, queen of my song,
List while I woo thee with soft melody;
Gone are the cares of life’s busy throng –
Beautiful dreamer, awake unto me!
As mortals who are born to be social animals and have a natural instinct to “love and want to be loved”, a partner who becomes one’s “soul mate” evokes in the loved one a tremendous feeling of tenderness and oneness that the condition is often like “in a dream”; hence the “beautiful dreamer” description, associated with the quiet and tenderness of “the moonlight”, enchanted with song (“soft melody”) sung in a low voice so that the quiet may not be disturbed … We are all familiar with the phrase “Wine, Women and Song” – I guess the missing “wine” in Beautiful Dreamer is subtly embedded in the “kisses” that the lover awake must have softly planted on his dearest aslumber! That’s the imagination on a reader’s part, fulfilling one of the fundamental evocations that a great poem have on us! I believe an essay of a thousand words in prose would not be able to achieve what Foster could accomplish in less than a hundred words – awakening the deepest feelings and imagination in readers who have tasted the wine of a woman’s kiss, and even perhaps among those yet to be initiated into such an experience, and hence privileged to be bestowed by a maestro of an intimation of intimate moments between man and woman.
PS:(2.20pm) The theme of LOVE will be continued next Sunday. Visit desiderata.english sevendays hence, wilt thee? Is "wilt" properly used here?
PPS:(2.30pm) I read with horror an item in a newspaper today where a "prize winning" entry consisting of about 50 words contained TWO HOWLERS! Mayhaps it indicates the "state of affairs" the English language has descended into. Mercy, mercy!
Would readers want to track down what piece I'm referring to -- maybe I'll arrange for a "surprise" prize for the best argued entry to spy the referenced HOWLERS! Email me: email@example.com... ENJOY!
Very beautiful pieces which melt my heart. I recall some beautiful love poems written by the late Tan Sri Eusoffe Abdoolcader dedicated to his late wife. The late Tan Sri took his own life tragically to join his wife in heaven a few years later. I couldn't find any archives of his poems in the nett. Does anybody know where I can find them?
By 8:31 PM, at
Yes, I remember reading tose poems by the late Justice too. (Dedications via ad in local newspapers ... I shed a tear or 2 reading them...)
Physically small in size,(I'm honoured to have met him personally as a journalist/press officer then) the late Tan Sri was "towering" in stature, well admired by fellow judges for his "exquisite" (literary) judgements!
Any readers have access to Eusoffe's poems -- Desiderata will be honoured with your help in sharing them! I promise a teh tarik?
hmmm Romeo and Juliet, huh~ very different from my piece. A fantastic variation of perspective on this topic :) you write good~
If I have ginger and lobak for company
A wonderful evening of soup and song we'll cook up in glee
Shakespeare ould keep love aglow
Wordsmiths like thee&ginger will my good life grow
Thanks for thy soup for the soul.
searching for those Tan Sri's poem as well.His affection for his wife astound me,such simplicity and yet so tragic
the poem by the late tan sri..i remember reading it from the star newspaper and i can memorise most of the lines..i guess so..originally in latin version n english as well..let me try if i can still remember..
'my dearest darling, half of soul, light of my life and jewel of all wives..
i think of thee, of thee and yet of thee,
like thee there never yet can ever be..thine two intoxicating eyes i miss, and thy cheeks and lips i used to kiss..
if helen of troy were clad in the beauty of thousand stars, then thou gentle as evening air art in mine eyes, as shine the moon among the lesser fires,
of all the queens that ever lived, i chose thee to rule me, mine very own halena (his wife's name), my one and only, to the very marrow thou will see i love ye,
o' how in the world am i to live without thee?
those r d beautiful lines and i guess i got correctly..i felt obliged when all of you requested for that poem..all the while i tot i m d only one who really touched by that lines..hope it would be helpful..regards, MJ http://profiles.friendster.com/rockyjulkarnain
c u guys..n i guess u all must be lawyers..so long my learned friends..rgds, Muammar Julkarnain Esq., from beeston leeds UK