Love Poems & Prose, recommendations from our bookseller, Jill

“Maybe we're just born to love and worry about the people we know, and to go on loving and worrying even when there are more important things we should be doing? And if that means the human species is going to die out, isn't it in a way a nice reason to die out, the nicest reason you can imagine?”

Sally Rooney, Beautiful World, Where are you?



100 LOVE SONNETS, Pablo Neruda, translated by Stephen Tapscott,1986, paperback $14.95. This collection is a beautiful way to explore the sensuality of language, enjoy the passion (and despair) of gut-wrenching emotion, and celebrate devotion that is firmly rooted in that which is familiar – but surprisingly exotic at second glance. Volume is printed in both English and its original Spanish. Call the store to order (505) 988-4226


Excerpt:

Let's try and avoid death in small doses,

reminding oneself that being alive

requires an effort far greater

than the simple fact of breathing.


HOW TO LOVE, Thich Nhat Hanh (1926-2022), paperback $9.95. An exploration of the simple, profoundly transformative daily practices of love and understanding, which apply not only to romantic relationships but to all forms of “interbeing.” Don’t forget to jump ahead to test your capacity for loving with the disarming 20 questions in the back pages. Available to order online from CW here.


THE BOOK OF LOVE, Rumi, translated by Coleman Barks, paperback, 2003 $15.95. Essential for any shelf. There’s a reason this Sufi mystic from the 13th century still circulates the modern love web of social media. Read these incendiary poems at your own peril. You might find yourself devoting all of your energies to the fires of love. Available to order online from CW here.


Excerpt:

There’s a strange frenzy in my head,

of birds flying,

each particle circulating on its own.

Is the one I love everywhere?


COMMUNION: THE FEMALE SEARCH FOR LOVE, bell hooks, 2002 paperback $15.99. Empowering lessons in self-awareness. hooks speaks of loving oneself radically, underneath the burden of a patriarchal design. She writes that women are taught they are better at loving than other genders, which she presents as dangerously untrue. In her perspective, they are better at folding the laundry and compromising the definition of love. An enlightening read. Available to order online from CW here.


THERE ARE MORE BEAUTIFUL THINGS THAN BEYONCE, Morgan Parker, paperback 2017 $15.95. A TIME Magazine Best Paperback of 2017 One of Oprah Magazine's "Ten Best Books of 2017. Parker eludes to daily life with a spicy punch-in-the-gut fervor that debilitates even the most pragmatic of us. Available to order online from CW here.


Excerpt:

Everything crazy is the best

It's what I learned from aunties

& empty bottles after midnight/


MY DARLING FROM THE LIONS, Rachel Long, paperback 2020 $16.95. Founder of the Octavia Poetry Collective for Women of Colour, Long’s collection is bold and intimate, stripping away falsehoods to reveal a vulnerable portrayal of a modern female. Available to order online from CW here.


Excerpt:

This morning he told me

I sleep with my mouth open

and my hands in my hair.

I say, “What, like screaming?

He says “No, like abandon”



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