Friday, August 20, 2010

Is love a tender thing?

Since Beowulf days, where the stories that were told were finally put to paper, there has been just a few topics that have stood the test of time. War, Power, Currency, and the epic one... Love.
This word is known throughout the entire world, whether it be: حُب, 喜爱, láska, kærlighed, liefde, armastus, rakkaus, amour, die Liebe, αγάπη, szeretet, ást, sayang, amore, 愛, 애정, mīlestība, meilė, kjærlighet, zamiłowanie, amor, dragoste, любовь, láska, ljubezen, amor, kärlek, aşk, or simply love. That's right, 28 eight languages, and 28 different words that mean that very same indefinable entity that rules our lives, almost 7 billion people.
Have you tried it lately? To define it? Ask yourself, what is love? It's a feeling right? How does it make you feel? Sit back right now and come up with some adjectives. Warm, comforting, invigorating, healing... But nothing quite fits does it? Don't worry, you're not the only one.
For centuries, poets have been trying to define this very thing. Today, song writers haven't developed a new topic yet, either. I just searched "love" on my itunes and found 115 results with the world love in the title. Yet, the most accurate description that I've ever found is Shakespeare's Sonnet 116:
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

This is what I think love is. This is one of his definition poems, and I feel that he hits it head on. Yet, I do have to say, that this is simply a poem based upon what love does and withstands, not what it is. Not the very supernatural or metaphysical existence of itself. To be honest, I have no words to define it. It does not exist in my head and although I did feel that burn in my chest every now and then, I don't believe the heart which pumps blood to the rest of my body, also holds love. I don't know whether it exists within ourselves or is perhaps housed in our auras. Perhaps it's simply a metaphysical energy that is created when two people are in close range with one another. I don't know.
I would like to, because the very reason for this particular blog is because I was staring at myself in the mirror a minute ago. I was staring, noticing the certain detachment that has grown in my eyes, and realized that it's been a hell of a long time since I felt it. There's the platonic family love, sure. But I don't feel that. I just know it's there. When my mom brings me home dinner, or my friend calls to chat. It makes me smile, but I don't feel anything. At the DIA today, I felt excitement for the first time in awhile and I almost mistook it for anxiety.
So I guess my question here is, do other people feel this still? Does love exist for those over 20 years old. And for that matter, does love exist for those who have already lost their love? Their Big, True, whatever-adjective-you-choose love? Can you feel those butterflies again, the dropping of the stomach, can't eat-can't sleep-die without you love?
Because all I keep thinking is that I had that. I had it once. It was real, and I felt it. I felt it somewhere inside me. And that part is dead now. And I'm just throwing this question out into the universe, a general wondering, whether or not I will ever be able to revive that little part of myself. Is this punishment? I had it, and I let it go. I didn't fight, I didn't fly down there and confess my love. I just let it go, without so much as a phone call afterward. Am I being punished because I made one cowardly act? I say one, because I did fight, a lot, before. I grew up believing that love could save us all, and with love, anything could be done. I once believed that love was enough, and I fought like hell to keep it. But at the end, I don't know, I must have been worn out, beaten down, and perhaps disillusioned. And when I was beaten, I told myself that I would never let it happen again. When love failed, I turned to reason. Love is not a real thing. It didn't make sense for me to fly down and be with him. I have responsibilities. And I stuck to that. I guess that I still am with questioning the definition of love. Because somewhere, deep down inside, I'm waiting. I'm waiting for that boy to look at me with severe eyes and say, "Alicia, I love you. You don't have to do this anymore."
But I chose Reason, Rationality, and Education. Does love even exist in this world? Can I really tell myself that I believe in something that does not have any real structure, format, or concrete evidence? Can I trust something that is so easily broken and walked away from? Can I truly believe in something that was never reciprocated? I guess we'll find out.
As for now, I guess I'll stick to telling myself that love spelled backwards is evol, and Shakespeare said it best when he wrote, "Is love a tender thing? It is too rough, too rude, too boisterous; and it pricks like thorn."

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