My Two Favorite Love Poems of All Time

Loving In The War Years

by Cherrie Moraga

Loving you is like living
in the war years
I do think of Bogart & Bergman
not clear who’s who
but still singin a long smoky
mood into the piano bar
drinks straight up
the last bottle in the house
while bombs split
outside, a broken
world.

A world war going on
but you and I still insisting
in each our own heads
still thinkin how
if I could only make some contact
with the woman across the keyboard
we size each other up

yes…

Loving you has this kind of desperation
to it, like do or die, I
having eyed you from the first
time you made the decision to move
from your stool
to live dangerously.

All on the hunch
that in our exchange of photos
of old girlfriends, names
of cities and memories
back in the states
the fronts we’ve manned
out here on the continent
all this on the hunch
that this time there’ll be
no need for resistance.

Loving in the war years
calls for this kind of risking
without a home to call our own
I’ve got to take you as you come
to me, each time like a stranger
all over again. Not knowing
what deaths you saw today
I’ve got to take you
as you come, battle bruised
refusing our enemy, fear.

We’re all we’ve got. You and I
maintaining
this war time morality
where being queer
and female is as rude
as we can get.

Intifada Incantation: Poem 38 for b.b.L.

by June Jordan

I SAID I LOVED YOU AND I WANTED
GENOCIDE TO STOP
I SAID I LOVED YOU AND I WANTED AFFIRMATIVE
ACTION AND REACTION
I SAID I LOVED YOU AND I WANTED MUSIC
OUT THE WINDOWS
I SAID I LOVED YOU AND I WANTED
NOBODY THIRST AND NOBODY
NOBODY COLD
I SAID I LOVED YOU AND I WANTED I WANTED
JUSTICE UNDER MY NOSE
I SAID I LOVED YOU AND I WANTED
BOUNDARIES TO DISAPPEAR
I WANTED
NOBODY ROLL BACK THE TREES!
I WANTED
NOBODY TAKE AWAY DAYBREAK!
I WANTED NOBODY FREEZE ALL THE PEOPLE ON THEIR
KNEES!I WANTED YOU
I WANTED YOUR KISS ON THE SKIN OF MY SOUL
AND NOW YOU SAY YOU LOVE ME AND I STAND
DESPITE THE TRILLION TREACHERIES OF SAND
YOU SAY YOU LOVE ME AND I HOLD THE LONGING
OF THE WINTER IN MY HAND
YOU SAY YOU LOVE ME AND I COMMIT
TO FRICTION AND THE UNDERTAKING
OF THE PEARLYOU SAY YOU LOVE ME
YOU SAY YOU LOVE ME

AND I HAVE BEGUN
I BEGIN TO BELIEVE MAYBE
MAYBE YOU DO

I AM TASTING MYSELF
IN THE MOUTH OF THE SUN

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