Thursday, November 22, 2007

This Dark Thing Called Love

Because Marta posted a wonderful poem by Henrik Nordbrandt, a poem that has surprised me by its beauty, I searched for another by the same poet, and found the one copied below. I was unaware of Nordbrandt till now, like other melodies and various other pains. The question of love buzzes. The poem is called Sailing.

After having loved we lie close together
and at the same time with distance between us
like two sailing ships that enjoy so intensely
their own lines in the dark water
that their hulls
are almost splitting from sheer delight
after racing, out in the blue
under sails which the night wind fills
with flower-scented air and moonlight
without one of them trying to out sail the other
and without the distance between them
lessening or growing at all.

But there are other nights, when we drift
like two brightly illuminated luxury liners
lying side by side with the engines shut off, under a strange constellation
and without a single passenger on board:
On each deck a violin orchestra is playing
in honor of the luminous waves.
And the sea is full of old tired ships
which we have sunk in our attempt to reach each other.

Translated from the Danish by the author and A. Taylor.


Marta said...

...and here again, like sitting around a coffee table, at discussing the most impossible of all, love :)

This sailing is beautiful, too. Like in the other one of Nordbrandt that I had from Swiss (not sure if you have read it, I’ll republish it for you) there is this feeling of equilibrium, this search for equal weights in the being two, that I like very much. Not ideologically, but because I love who is generous, who actually looks, almost instinctively, to make the game fair. I don’t know if you agree, but often in love the game is not ‘fair’. One loves more than another, one is stronger, or richer, or younger, than the other. It is not a static difference, but it could be. With some persons it is very hard that this disequilibrium persists, love with them hosts up and down, letting go of power games, a soon as they get identified. I love there persons.

But why am I saying this? Ah!, Just to say that more and more I realise that I don't know anything about love in abstract, but know, am getting conscious, of what I love in who I love.

And am enchanted at how, and why, that or that other specific person has attracted me. Partly it is because often I look for the seed of misconstructions than eventually led me to pain, partly because I am trying to understand myself, and love myself more.

Kubla Khan said...

you have explained well.
let me quote Camus......'There are those who are made for loving and those made for living love'.
there is never an equilibrium in love, the giving is as much there in relation to what one can receive. in such instances, this sounds mechanical, but does not look so.
the power thing that you mention can come after love but it does exist before too. the very acknowledgement of love is an instance of lack of control.
one gets attracted to people but love is different, the very essence of love is pain.
and, i find the constructions of power equations here not a very subtle way of explaining things, for there are people who do really fall in love......unquestioned, unasked for, unanswered, perhaps platonic to begin with, but more akin to a surrendur, a sacrifice.
in your previous post you had talked about different types of desire etc.
sometimes maybe.....such things cannot be explained. there is desire even in writing, in not doing so. sometimes too much rationality sounds useless.
when you look at someone and the pain buds inside, the longing, the hurt.....thats love.
even if it is an illusion.