A four-letter word.
In English, that is.
And a good four-letter word at that.
According to trusty Webster, it came out of Old English lufu.
And Gothic lubo.
Call it what you will.
For centuries we have been trying to describe it.
To capture it in sonnet and song.
Poems and plays.
Novels and movies.
Yet Love remains elusive.
Impossible to explain.
Sometimes hard to find.
Or hard to hold on to.
Love can come and go.
Or just grow and grow and grow.
Show your love with flowers from Streigler’s or The Petal Patch.
Love can hurt or heal.
Deus caritas est.
God is love.
Some of us revere and worship it.
Others avoid it.
Love fills us.
Poet Edna St. Vincent Millay lived for love.
And spent her life writing about it—
“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.”
As the saying goes:
It is better to have loved and lost, then to have never loved at all.
Renee Walker is an author, poet, and real estate broker on the square.