— Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
Love adorns itself;
it seeks to prove inward joy by outward beauty.
Love does not claim possession,
but gives freedom.
Love is an endless mystery,
for it has nothing else to explain it.
Love’s gift cannot be given,
it waits to be accepted.
Poems On Love by Rabindranath Tagore
— Josephine Winslow Johnson, Now in November
Love, I speak to your heart,
Your heart that is always here.
Oh draw me deep to its sphere,
Though you and I are apart,
And yield, by the spirit’s art,
Each distant gift that is dear.
O love, my love, you are here!
Your eyes are afar to-day,
Yet, love, look now in mine eyes.
Two hearts sent forth may despise
All dead things by the way.
All between is decay,
Dead hours and this hour that dies.
O love, look deep in mine eyes!
Your hands to-day are not here,
Yet lay them, love, in my hands.
The hourglass sheds its sands
All day for the dead hours’ bier;
But now, as two hearts draw near,
This hour like a flower expands.
O love, your hands in my hands!
Your voice is not on the air,
Yet, love, I can hear your voice:
It bids my heart to rejoice
As knowing your heart is there,—
A music sweet to declare
The truth of your steadfast choice.
O love, how sweet is your voice!
To-day your lips are afar,
Yet draw my lips to them, love.
Around, beneath, and above,
Is frost to bind and to bar;
But where I am and you are,
Desire and the fire thereof.
O kiss me, kiss me, my love!
Your heart is never away,
But ever with mine, for ever,
For ever without endeavour,
To-morrow, love, as to-day;
Two blent hearts never astray,
Two souls no power may sever,
Together, O my love, for ever!
Parted Presence by Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Our souls have touched each other,
Two fountains from one jet;
Like children of one mother
Our leaping thoughts have met.
We were as far asunder
As green isles in the sea;
And now we ask in wonder
How that could ever be.
I dare not call thee lover
Nor any earthly name,
Though love’s full cup flows over
As water quick with flame.
When two strong minds have mated
As only spirits may,
The wold shines new created
In a diviner day.
Yea, though hard fate may sever
My fleeting self from thine,
Thy thought will live for ever
And ever grow in mine.
Our Souls Have Touched Each Other by Mathilde Blind