The ways to say I love you.
How do I love thee? Wrote Elizabeth Barrett Browning, “let me count the ways” and just as the poet does this, so we know there are many ways to say I love you, or should that be many ways to show how you love someone. She loves her love “freely” “purely” “I love thee with passion” “from the ends of beings.” This is a woman who is saying how she loves him in words that are as effective as “I love you”
You can show your love by making great sacrifices. “Sacrificing your happiness for the happiness of the one you love is by far, the truest type of love.” (Oscar Wilde).
This is what my heroine in Dangerous Enchantment does initially; she sacrifices everything to protect the boy entrusted to her care. This shows her love for him. She never has to say I love you” he knows that by the things she does.
When Robert Burns wrote of his love, he said she was like “a red red rose”. That’s newly sprung in June,”
How wonderful to be told that you are loved that much. What could be more perfect than a red rose dripping with dew…sigh.
And John Donne so wants to stay abed with his love that he wishes the sun gone. He is angry that the sun comes in creeping through the curtains, meaning that he will have to part from his love. “Busy old fool, unruly sun, why dost thou thus through windows and curtains call upon us…”
But perhaps the question this week is not quite as esoteric as it might seem. How do we writers show love? It can be tedious to write “I love you” and how many of us keep the reader’s waiting for the words to be spoken. How does the reader know that the hero or heroine is in love? We can describe their inner feelings, how they feel when they see their heart’s desire. The things they do, the softening of the alpha male. The kindness to the heroine that he, unexpectedly shows. And we can show it by our protagonist’s pain when one or the other seems to be attracted to someone else! Not jealousy but a pain of loss.
With Valentine’s Day having occurred this week all minds are on love, but isn’t it a bit trivialized by this commercialization? It does irritate me when peple say “love yu” and you know they can’t possibly. Why do they say that, it would be better to say “Like you!” Or is that me being terribly mean because I know I won’t get any flowers or cards this year? Perhaps. I am only human after all.
Oh but wait…yes I did receive some flowers, from an ex-student of mine so there
Doesn’t that tell you something? It might not be romantic love but it shows love of a kind and a love that is precious too.
Ways to say, “I love you”? Nothing sounds better than those three words if you are in love, and as Francine pointed out, how much sexier they sound in a foreign language.