Sunday, 27 May 2012

The More Loving One

I've had a copy of this book for a few years. It does not contain any of Auden's poetry but it was Moore's drawings I was primarily interested in. Recently I have started to look at Auden's work and this one has relevance for some people in my life at the moment. 

Looking up at the stars, I know quite well
That, for all they care, I can go to hell,
But on earth indifference is the least
We have to dread from man or beast.

How should we like it were stars to burn
With a passion for us we could not return?
If equal affection cannot be,
Let the more loving one be me.

Admirer as I think I am
Of stars that do not give a damn,
I cannot, now I see them, say
I missed one terribly all day.

Were all stars to disappear or die,
I should learn to look at an empty sky
And feel its total dark sublime,
Though this might take me a little time.

W.H. Auden

Better to love than be loved? When we love we are alive. We don't want to feel that we are lacking in our capacity for loving, making us less good humans. When we do love we want to believe in it's power, that it is everlasting. Love dying, love fading is the saddest thing. 

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