Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to revisit my old love of poetry and share it with others. So much poetry, after all, is inspired by love itself. 

Love Bats garden 2
Love Bats, pencil on paper, approx. 9″ square, ©2018

I wrote the following poem to accompany the drawings shown with this post:

Our Strange Love 

Our love is strange, dark, unique.
Grew as its thorned vines crawled and creeped.
As ages passed, and tears quenched its thirst ~
in ecstasy and pain,
and the intimacies rehearsed.
Now tightly woven, around and through. ~
Our little garden is feeding
off us two ~
Offering us earthly delights the day long,
with a place to rest
at the end of our song.


For all its implied romance, some of the poetry about love that resonates the most, isn’t all roses and smiles. On the contrary, it can be complicated, complex. Even mournful. For in our most pleasant moments in life, death is always around the corner. Nothing lasts, good or bad.

On that note, the poet John Ashbery died last year. He wasn’t exactly a romantic sort, rather he was known more for a surreal style of writing. As I’ve been learning about his work and his life, I find that he used words in his poetry much like a visual artist would use paint on a canvas – applied abstractly, but not devoid of meaning. I’m also struck by something he has been quoted as saying:

“My ambition was to be a painter,” Ashbery told Peter Stitt of the Paris Review. He took painting classes in his preteen years, but “found that poetry was easier than painting.” 

Perhaps poetry is easier, in that it may be less physically demanding. Though, endeavors may also just seem “easier” when we simply enjoy doing them. As I rekindle my love of poetry and continue to draw, I will keep this seed of thought in mind and watch how it grows.

Love Bats gardens - display
Love Bats, ©2018