“Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back. Those who wish to sing always find a song. At the touch of a lover, everyone becomes a poet.” Plato
“Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.” Leonardo da Vinci
As Christmas is supposed to be more than boatloads of presents under a tree, shouldn’t Valentine’s Day be more than chocolates, jewelry and flowers? What if we dove beneath the Hallmark surface and mined this day for its real meaning? Could we make a meaningful celebration with our beloveds that center around love and intimacy sans the pressure of consumerism? My hope is that each of you connect with your sweethearts in a way that runs deep for both (or all!) of you.
Here’s an idea: make dinner at home—together—and take some time to look into each other’s eyes, stroke each other’s faces tenderly. Read each other a couple of romantic poems, or write each other a love poem. Be playful. Try limericks or haiku—or whatever calls to you. Be present with loving your partner—with all that he or she brings to your life. If you’re unpartnered, write a love poem to yourself. After all, we are the original source of love for ourselves: in other words, it’s hard to accept love from others unless we first feel it from ourselves. Feel the difference in how you experience Valentine’s Day when it really is about love—rather than a token Hallmark holiday. Below are three of my favorite love poems from Hafiz. The poetry of Rumi, Hafiz, Mira—so many others may provide some inspiration.
From my heart to yours: love deeply, authentically—it may feel exquisitely vulnerable—turn towards that feeling and come alive in love.
How Did The Rose?
did the rose
ever open its heart
and give this world all of its beauty?
It felt the encouragement of light against its being,
Otherwise we all remain too frightened.
One regret that I am determined not to have
when I am l lying upon my
is that we did not kiss
Then stay with me, for I am not.
A thousand naked amorous ones dwell in ancient caves
beneath my eyelids.
Here’s a pick,
my whole body is an emerald that begs,
Write all that worries you on a piece of parchment;
offer it to God.
Even from the distance of a millennium
I can lean the flame of my heart
into your life
all that frightens you