I receive the e-newsletter from BrainPickings.org every Sunday, which is a labor of love by one woman named Maria Popova. This week, just like every week, Maria shared many items, including a poem by Derek Walcott. A poet and playwright from Saint Lucia in the Caribbean, Walcott wrote “Love after Love,” a piece about loving thyself, which sings to me.
The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you
all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.
–Derek Wolcott, “Love after Love,” in Collected Poems, 1948-1984