13th December 2019

Love is

“I know that love can be loud and jubilant. It can be dancing in the swampy mud and the pouring rain at a festival and shouting ‘YOU ARE F***ING AMAZING’ over the band.

It’s introducing them to your colleagues at a work event and basking in pride as they make people laugh and make you look lovable just by dint of being loved by them… It’s a big, beautiful, ebullient force of nature.

And I also know that love is a pretty quiet thing. It’s lying on the sofa together drinking coffee, talking about where you’re going to go that morning to drink more coffee. It’s folding down pages of books you think they’d find interesting.

It’s hanging up their laundry when they leave the house having moronically forgotten to take it out of the washing machine… I know that love happens under the splendour of moon and stars and fireworks and sunsets but it also happens when you’re lying on blow-up air beds in a childhood bedroom, sitting in A&E or in the queue for a passport or in a traffic jam.

Love is a quiet, reassuring, relaxing, pottering, pedantic, harmonious hum of a thing; something you can easily forget is there, even though its palms are outstretched beneath you in case you fall.”

― Dolly Alderton, Everything I Know About Love

“…love is a skill, not just an enthusiasm.”
― Alain de Botton, The Course of Love

Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
      Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
      Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
      Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
      Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
      Even as the strings of the lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

     Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
      For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
      And stand together yet not too near together:
      For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
      And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.

― Kahlil Gibran, On Marriage from The Prophet

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“In an ideal world, marriage vows would be entirely rewritten. At the altar, a couple would speak thus: “We accept not to panic when, some years from now, what we are doing today will seem like the worst decision of our lives. Yet we promise not to look around, either, for we accept that there cannot be better options out there. Everyone is always impossible. We are a demented species.”

― Alain de Botton, The Course of Love

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