Monday, March 15, 2010


Nowadays, as I'm thinking about my older sons and their girlfriends, I wonder about whether they will charm their future brides with the sort of earnest courting that they will deserve. So much less formality about dating today. "Courting" sounds old school. Well, I graduated from that old school, and maybe that's why I like the romantic variety of sonnet. If it was good enough for Shakespeare, it's good enough for me. Here's a sonnet about that electric moment of the proposal...

by Gideon Burton

One word slow ripens, opens on her lips
twice stirred by kisses, silenced, pursed,
the current aches in her, she tastes she sips,
demure to savor silence, let him first
unwind her gaze, distill to language white
and fine as pearls or milk one drop one word
resigns her will and still he waits and weights
the time with heavy hope, he moves toward
the, oh, so simple syllables, he breathes
to stow the courage, births the thought in flesh
"And so–" "Don't speak, I know," say eyes and seethes
and flows their minute, minds, and hands to mesh
     combine, contract, renew, awake, confess:
     one word she urges, sudden, quiet: yes.

Feel free to copy, imitate, remix, or redistribute this poem as long as you give proper acknowledgment of authorship. Photo courtesy of Rachel Rueckert Photography

1 comment:

  1. Yes, you are a romantic. And times are a-changin' when it comes to romancing.