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Saturday, December 18, 2010

Poem of the Week

So, I thought I might start a feature in which I post poem and a few thoughts about it and then whoever would like to add their interpretations could do so in the comments section. The poem below is called "I Love You, Sweatheart" by Thomas Lux. Baby Friday introduced it to me, and I really love it. Lux takes the misspelled "sweatheart" (I like to think that he actually saw this spraypainted on an overpass somewhere) and runs with it. For Lux, this spelling error actually becomes a more accurate portrayal of the lover's amour, "all sore and dumb / and dangerous." I think he is right when he says, "Love is like this at the bone, we hope." I also really like how he utitlizes enjambment (or the breaking of a phrase, clause or setence by the end of a line) to increase the anxiety of the poem and offer double-meanings to some lines. Just a great poem. Enjoy!

I Love You, Sweatheart
Thomas Lux

A man risked his life to write the words.
A man hung upside down (an idiot friend
holding his legs?) with spray paint
to write the words on a girder fifty feet above
a highway. And his beloved,
the next morning driving to work...?
His words are not (meant to be) so unique.
Does she recognize his handwriting?
Did he hint to her at her doorstep the night before
of "something special, darling, tomorrow"?
And did he call her at work
expecting her to faint with delight
at his celebration of her, his passion, his risk?
She will know I love her now,
the world will know my love for her!
A man risked his life to write the world.
Love is like this at the bone, we hope, love
is like this, Sweatheart, all sore and dumb
and dangerous, ignited, blessed--always,
regardless, no exceptions,
always in blazing matters like these: blessed.


  1. There's a band called Sweatheart, and they have a song called 'Finger Bangin'. True story!

  2. I remember this poem from college. I love it!

  3. So, I am late to the MOBFD party and just read this post yesterday. When I first read it I thought the post was by a monster I did not know named Thomas Lux. This is normal as I am constantly getting confused with Vg / Twitter / Facebook names. I read the poem and thought "OH MY GOD I LOVE THIS POEM AND I LOVE YOU UNKNOWN MONSTER THOMAS LUX!!" Then I re-read the whole thing and realized that, of course, it was posted by Teach via Baby Friday and Cake had already commented that she knew and loved this poem. Then I thought "Jesus, I like these people way too much." Then I sighed. <--Good story, tell it at parties!