A heart without love
On Valentine’s Day –
Is a dark home without heat –
A terrible place to stay
On a cold midwinter’s day!
02.13.95 – 07.08.95
Copyright by Minh Tan on listed dated of completion
and published in Perspectives, ISBN 0-9686250-0-2.
Notes to this poem…
Ain’t that the truth, though! A Valentine’s Day poem, from being single on yet another Valentine’s Day, this poem never got started till the day I finished it, really, as I had jotted down the idea without even a line of verse. When you have a poetry notebook and lots of patience to leave poems till if feels right to work on it again, you can do this, leave it for months or longer before coming back to it.
My idea for this poem was that instead of writing about the heart within me, empty, cold and such, without love on Valentine’s Day, I’d write about the feelings I had because of it, to be similar to as if I were living in it. It was a simple reversal, but a neat one, I thought. It helped the imagery to stretch the metaphor that Valentine’s Day is during winter, when it’s cold outside, at least in Canada and a lot of the world.
I still have never been with someone on Valentine’s Day as of 2008 so I’ve never really had a cause to celebrate it in the proper way. I don’t hate the holiday, but I don’t like it a whole lot, either. It’s the one day during the year throughout the years since I started writing poetry that I’ve written poetry on the most often, and probably devoted more time to writing poetry then than any other day of the year. You could certainly make an argument on that of how I might consider it the next best thing to falling in love, but that’s not true. It’s the best therapy for lack of love… and that is true any day, not just Valentine’s Day.
The O-series of poems are one stanza poems composed before I got onto writing haiku and tanka, and short poetry while in action or traveling by select means like plane or ferry. These poems are 3-9 lines long with at least one rhyming couplet, and not of the short forms just mentioned. For the sake of elegance, I just called the collection One.