Saturday, April 18, 2009

Love Is Not All / Edna St. Vincent Millay

Love is not all: it is not meat nor drink
Nor slumber nor a roof against the rain;
Nor yet a floating spar to men that sink
And rise and sink and rise and sink again;
Love can not fill the thickened lung with breath,
Nor clean the blood, nor set the fractured bone;
Yet many a man is making friends with death
Even as I speak, for lack of love alone.
It well may be that in a difficult hour,
Pinned down by pain and moaning for release,
Or nagged by want past resolution's power,
I might be driven to sell your love for peace,
Or trade the memory of this night for food.
It well may be. I do not think I would.


Mike Young said...

now that's a good fucking sonnet, yo

Anonymous said...

i'm writing a paper on just this topic (well, what i'm interpreting as the topic of this poem which is the impracticality and all-consuming awfulness of love in one's life) right now and i tell you it's very depressing.

from my notes:
Laclos 151: “I love you more than ever; but this love which is the charm of my life is becoming its torment.”