Love After Love by Derek Walcott

Love After Love by Derek Walcott

I discovered this poem lately and fell in love with it. It is about being at home in yourself, and loving who you are. It is also about owning all of your stories, experiences, strengths, and weaknesses—and treating them with respect, compassion and love.

So often, we are inclined to search for happiness outside of ourselves. We want to find someone to love – who will love us back. We want to be accepted and “successful” in life. We want people to like us. We show the world only what we want them to see and suppress the parts we think people won’t like. Meeting and reconnecting with our true selves brings us into our dynamic, wonderful wholeness.

In Derek Walcott’s poem, that’s the person you meet at your door: the YOU with potential, goodness and dreams, the YOU born with greatness.
Enjoy this fabulous poem. “Sit. Feast on your life.”

LOVE AFTER LOVE

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 yourself.
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.

I wanted you to hear a reading of this poem. My favourite is a reading by
Oprah in Hamilton USA, in 2013. It’s a video by Maria Lianos-Carbone who attended the show. Thank you Maria!