Odyssey of Love

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Free Verse Poetry
Years ago, I contemplated a book of poetry about love, but one that was not Hallmark prone. My experience compelled me to address the many ways love is expressed, felt, and most important, defined. I’ve since concluded that trying to define love is well near impossible, as it is probably the most subjective emotion, we, as sapient beings, possess. So, I’ve put together a conglomerate of my writings about love that constitutes my journey. Perhaps, some of it is identifiable for you. I hope so. And, I should perhaps apologize for its length, but. some of us must travel a long distance to go a short way, as happened with me. (Painting by Ron Hicks 1965)

Submitted: May 01, 2019

A A A | A A A

Submitted: May 01, 2019






As Infant,

IT was simple.




See and hear.

Soft was soft.

Smiles were smiles.

Kisses were kisses.


As Child,

IT was…different.

Am I cared for?

Am I really liked?

Am I loved…really?


As Adolescent,

IT was…Hell.

If I do this well, will I be--?

Why did they invent mirrors, anyway?

Why don’t I love even myself?

Will I ever find IT?


As adult,

IT was…a disaster.

I knew what IT was.

Why didn’t they?

I knew what IT needed.

Why couldn’t I find more?

I learned IT was all misread.

Why didn’t others?


As a Being,

I’m listening to petals open.

I’m seeing noise made quiet.

I’m smelling transcendent breezes.

I’m tasting fragrances awakened.

I’m touching the infant within.


What if IT just is,

sans definition for its own sake?




Who and what of love,

lodged in a world where marriage convention

affords little emotional purchase,

and commitment outside the institution

weighs heavy on the traditional.




Panicked love-brokers of halo driven missteps

mount their marbled pedestals of self-deceit

and preach their continuum for tried and proven failure

to those of vacuous preference.


Who might they be,

these carnivorous angels of imagination,

these habitual slight-of-hand love merchants in three-piece suits

and vestments of supernatural protection,

whose power of persuasion beckons you buy

into the promised love-thirsty memories of tomorrow?


What mutation of species thrives on the suffocation of will,

who bless the innocent to sacred prisons of the flesh,

where long-term pain of born-again ignorance

is sanctified in the form of perpetual lineage?


And who are those who reject such iconoclastic relics of yesterday

and seek rather the oft-missed nature of love,

that which proffers life’s partners as born of fragrances

from bouquets of unpollinated flowers,

visions of untrammeled dreams

and the concertos of atonal memory

tethered to a cloudless ether of joy and innocence?


We ponder and ask…

Is there a romance of life,

a ripple of peace and rest as storms fade behind us

and nature's wash cleanses the residual wounds of the past?


Does the blue of calm meet the red of passion with cautious beckoning?

Are we but delusional in our praise of the heart's ceaseless trumpeting of yesterday's echoes?


And what of this creature-comfort that oft times is mistaken for love?


Can it be that mind over matter is reality's checkmate for careless games of infatuation,

where the romance of love proves to be only dreams mistaken for consciousness,

bringing aloneness begging of forgiveness?


For truth be told,

romance is life,

a lyrical perspective,

allowing the music of winged intonations and soulful protocols

to harmonize with the fragrance of smiles that permeates the symphony of living,

where the clouds release sunlight,

storms arrest our complacency,

and cascades of past emotions take their rightful place in the now of yesterday,

the present of today and the magic of tomorrow.


What is romance if not all of nature,

all of the imagination,

and forever the rapture of love in all its wanting,

in all its impatience,

in all its unknowns,

and forever in all its undiscovered self-perpetuating enigma,

but oh how sweet its reality.


For the tenacious few, there is…


The dissonant romantic,

Who knows of imagination without reference,

Of flow without reason,

Of instinct beyond logic,

whose vision is colored by the reflection of white light from time remembered time,

who remains invisible to those who fail to see the valued juxtaposition

of rose petals atop the compost,

feel the caress of a Chinchilla's curiosity,

hear the high C of a Bay-Breasted Warbler Amidst the thunderous clouds of disappointment.


Even as searing emotion of hurt tries to bury her,

vibrations somehow reach the inner ear

and coalesce with memories untouched.




She is the dissonant romantic

who awakens in others the blossom of a seed unknown,

a consciousness that transcends all doubt,

a personal truth that shocks, then cradles the weary.


She is the dissonant romantic,

the ageless sage we all hunger for,

the one committed to creativity without judgment,

compromise or price.


Somewhere out there,

there is a dissonant romantic,

forever available to some,

known to few,

envied by many.

Perhaps the universal answer is to love each day,

to gather love's petals of laughter,

its dewdrops of sadness,

its rays of being satisfied with honesty,

for somewhere love needs to be...each day


But for love to turn the corner of life without looking both ways,

is to leave behind the wisdom of flowers in bloom,

about to become the re-cycling of life,

the clouds of insecurity,

not yet aware of their purpose,

to awaken your every morning,

coupled with your learned caution

that guides love to be where it needs to be...each day.


Oh, to be that cycle,

the cycle that mystery sometimes shrouds with mist

to give drink to the rose beneath the cover.


To know, to feel, the sound and sight of discovery,

to be aware each time it affords the chance

to approach the unknown valleys beyond the corner,

for that somewhere love needs to be... each day.


Love remains poised for the beginning of light's assent

that will become days becoming life's time capsule of patience,

awaiting where it must avail itself.


So while serving the winds of time,

let not our sometime ill choices

go without one’s water and soil

that prepares the inevitable thorns

that will guide us to full potential.


For although blooming comes often,

one's petals unfold only until such weight makes weary

the moment's sustainment of joy,

the moment's perpetual rapture,

the tenuous moment of love awaiting,

the next somewhere it needs to be...each day.





© Copyright 2020 Odin Roark. All rights reserved.

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