Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Valentine's Day, Jane Austin and Poetry

"My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you."  

These words spoken by Fitzwiliam Darcy to Elizabeth Bennet in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice are my favorite romantic lines.  Of course, their romance did not go smoothly from that scene, as Elizabeth refused him, but in the end, and despite all the twists and turns in the novel, the misunderstandings were unraveled, and they ended the story as man and wife.

The words, "admire" and "love" are important.   In any lasting relationship, you have to admire the one you love, or it will not last.  In those formal days of the 19th century, Jane Austen wrote a universal truth.

Poetry is not appreciated in the United States as it is in other countries.  Is it because we are a practical country?  But in other countries it is valued as in Central and South America.  Pablo Neruda from Chile wrote passionate and romantic poetry besides his tragic political poems.  "Puedo escribir los versos mas tristes esta noche .  Yo la quise, y a veces ella tambien me quiso."  (Tonight I can write the saddest lines, I loved her and sometimes she loved me too.")

In the movie, "Dead Poets' Society,"  Robin Williams, in his role as an English teacher in a New England prep school, answers his students question, "Why do we have to learn poetry?"  "To woo women, he answers."

To woo women. . . .

When I first met my husband at our 20 -- year high school reunion, we discovered that although we felt a strong attraction, we lived several states apart, not easy to pursue romance when there are physical miles between you.
Mr. Hobbes with Jane Austen, poem and rose

After we said good-by with many doubts hanging in the air, he sent me two things.  A picture of his little girl and this poem by T.S. Eliot:

"Footfall echo in the memory
Down the passage which we did not take
Towards the door we never opened
Into the rose garden."

And we did open the door into the rose garden and married five years later.

Happy Valentine's Day!


  1. Love this story - and I love Hobbes! Happy Valentine's Day!

  2. Thank you, CQ, and Happy Valentine's Day to you and yours.

  3. What a lovely poem. Happy Valentine's :)

  4. what a lovely post---i too am a great lover of poetry--it is really my first love in writing :)

    1. Hope you save your poetry somewhere besides cyberspace -- your poems are too good to lose.