Poetry Collections To Celebrate A Day Of Love

Our basis for life and living should always be for love, so stop and submerge yourself in these captivating poetry collections that celebrate love and romance.

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Poetry is the language of love and romance, set to charm, entice, and compel. Every day is a day of love and life. What lingers long after we’ve walked are our emotions and to eternalize those emotions of love, passion, desire, and loneliness is poetry. Here are five beautiful poetry collections that celebrate love, passion, and romance (with a note of angst).

The Ink Dark Moon by Ono no Komachi and Izumi Shikibu

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A man came secretly and left in heavy rain. In the poem he sent the next morning, he mentioned having gotten wet. I replied:

Love-soaked, rain soaked—

if people ask

which drenched your sleeves,

what will you say?

by Izumi Shikibu

Desire is the subject of this first poetry collection. Hailing from the imperial court of Heian Japan, Ono no Komachi and Izumi Shikibu draw us into their world of romantic intimacy and tempting liaisons with secret lovers and admirers aplenty. The Ink Dark Moon, translated by Jane Hirshfield and Mariko Aratani into English, is a poetry collection that is deeply seductive and personal. Both Komachi and Shikibu spin a web of irresistible charm and sharp intelligence that prove their standing as some of the greatest Japanese poets to ever live. As soon as you read this collection, you will be resolutely ensnared by their gentle but demanding language that once enchanted their secret lovers.

Rumi: The Book of Love: Poems of Ecstasy and Longing

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My work is to carry this love

as comfort for those who long for you,

to go everywhere you’ve walked

and gaze at the pressed-down dirt.

from “Your Face” by Rumi

Rumi is the poet of the heart and I would be remiss if I didn’t include him on this list of romantic poetry. Rumi: The Book of Love: Poems of Ecstasy and Longing (translated by Coleman Barks into English)—the title speaks for itself. One of the most famous poets of the Persian language, Rumi whispers love letters into your ears with this exquisite poetry collection. The poems are about love for love’s sake without leverage, conditions, or variations. Love to Rumi is eternal, divine, and consuming that exists everywhere we walk and breathe. Most important of all his words, Rumi tells us we carry love within us everywhere we go.

Crush by Richard Silken

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Tell me how all this, and love too, will ruin us.

These, our bodies, possessed by light.

Tell me we’ll never get used to it.

from “Scheherazade” by Richard Silken

A collection of ferocious and ravenous love, Richard Silken will devour you with his words in this next poetry collection. Crush by Richard Silken was chosen by Nobel Prize-winning poet Louise Glück as the winner of the 2004 Yale Younger Poets prize. Silken speaks about a love that is insatiable, that is so ferocious that it will burn you and make you crave for it. Deeply confessional, gay, and erotic, Silken’s words are striking and speak from a place of love that isn’t gentle, but harsh and meant to sting with a longing that can’t ever be satiated.

Stung with Love: Poems and Fragments

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You were at hand,

And I broke down raving—

My craving a fire

That singed my mind

A brand that you quenched

from Sappho

Sappho speaks in love fragments that bewitch us and move us with a desire to walk towards love. Stung with Love: Poems and Fragments, is a poetry collection that informs us about the bright intelligence and talent of the mysterious Sappho of Lesbos. Although ninety percent of her poetry is lost to time, Sappho is still regarded as one of the greatest poets of the Western ancient world. Her poetry is deeply lyrical and captures love, desire, and passion in a way that transcends time.

Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair by Pablo Neruda

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The night wind revolves in the sky and sings.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.

Through nights like this one I held her in my arms
I kissed her again and again under the endless sky.

from “Tonight I Can Write (The Saddest Lines)” by Pablo Neruda

When you hear Pablo Neruda, you immediately think about love. Chile’s Nobel Prize-winning poet stuns us with elegance, passion, and insightfulness. Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair appeals to the sensual and solitude with such intensity and tenderness. A collection that explores the span of human emotions, Neruda projects an understanding of complex and contrasting emotions that begets compassion and love. As with many of his other poetry, this collection of poetry will be a standard in your bookshelf because you can’t help but fall in love with his words.

For more poetry recommendations, take a look at Bookstr’s 10 Best Poetry Collections of 2021.

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