Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Nobody, not even the rain

I showed Hannah and Her Sisters to my boyfriend about a week ago, as he had never seen it, or a Woody Allen movie.  It's a favorite, and has been for a group of friends and myself since it came out when we were in high school.  There are many things I love about it. It still holds up, especially the great performances, including Dianne Wiest in her Oscar winning supporting actress role. 

What sticks with me most, though, is the beautiful poem by e e cummings called somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond that Michael Caine's character Eliot gives to Barbara Hershey's character Lee.  For a teenager, as I still was then, this poem was the epitome of romantic love.  I even cut out letters from magazines to assemble it on my wall in college. It's still one of my favorites.  My understanding of it is different, though it is still romantic.  I think it's one of the most beautiful poems I've ever read, if not the most.  Just strikes at the heart. Then again, I am prone to wistful things - I just watched a google doodle because it animated Clair de lune for Debussy's birthday, one of my favorite pieces of music ever.  Sigh.

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously) her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully, suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility: whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens; only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands

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