Jul 05 2018

Derek Walcott – Love After Love

Published by at 8:31 am under Poetry

Love After Love
by Derek Walcott

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 your self.
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.

— from Saved by a Poem: The Transformative Power of Words, by Kim Rosen

/ Image by vanillapearl /

I feel like a latecomer to Derek Walcott’s poetry. I first discovered his writing just a few years ago. In fact, this was the first poem of his that I read. I found it in Saved by a Poem (a book I highly recommend — a profound exploration of the many ways poetry can be a healing and transformative presence in our lives).

There is always more wonderful poetry to discover and explore but, once found, I never want to rush through it, so I eagerly take slow steps…

The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving

This is a magical moment, when we finally encounter ourselves… when we actually see through to something essential, when we see through to something that is what we really are.

Most of the time I think we carry a reflexive fear of that meeting, so we tense up and expend a great deal of effort to avoid it. But Derek Walcott rightly says it is a moment of elation, one that inspires a deep smile and a profound sense of homecoming.

and each will smile at the other’s welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.

Is there more to say? Perhaps also a reminder to celebrate the journey that has brought us here…

Sit. Feast on your life.

Recommended Books: Derek Walcott

Sea Grapes The Poetry of Derek Wolcott 1948 – 2013 Omeros White Egrets: Poems Collected Poems 1948 – 1984
More Books >>

Derek Walcott, Derek Walcott poetry, Christian poetry Derek Walcott

St. Lucia & UK (1930 – )

More poetry by Derek Walcott

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7 responses so far

7 Responses to “Derek Walcott – Love After Love”

  1. Ginaon 05 Jul 2018 at 12:00 pm

    Dear Ivan,

    I really loved this poem; it made me sit in front a mirror, smile at myself and look deep in to my eyes and talk to myself. I enjoyed the moment very much becaus I never do that.

    I wanted also to say that I think a poem once a week would be better than a couple of poems a week.

    Very kind regards,

  2. Radha srinivasanon 05 Jul 2018 at 9:44 pm

    thankyou mr ivan you are doing a great blissful work thankyou may you be blessed

  3. Isabellaon 07 Jul 2018 at 7:35 am

    Dear Ivan,

    One poem per week is good.

    Thank you very much.

  4. Carol Bon 08 Jul 2018 at 9:31 am

    Dear Ivan,

    Thank you so much for all you do!

    One poem a week is plenty. I like to sit with them and review them, savor them in my mind and with my mouth. In fact – biweekly would be okay too!

  5. marrobon 09 Jul 2018 at 7:24 pm

    Hi Ivan,

    I find I often return to the poems and comments to reread and glean more meaning, or just to enjoy again –
    like a favourite ‘seat’ in a garden or walk . This is certainly true of ‘Love After Love’
    which gives such layers of truth. Thank you.

    Just to say too that 1 poem a week works fine with me.

  6. Warren Robert Reineckeon 16 Oct 2018 at 6:46 pm

    Hi Ivan,
    I’m all for one poem per week. Your poetry blog is often the highlight of several such sites
    and one per week gives it space to be anticipated and savored. Thank you, thank you!

  7. Shamla Devion 29 Apr 2021 at 1:00 am

    Beloved Mr. Ivan M. Granger

    I am deeply grateful for your profound sharing.

    Especially for the divine gift of Kim Rosen’s “Saved by a Poem”

    Through the miles/kilometres and time our souls meet. How wondrous and beautiful this Life unfolds.


    Shamla Devi

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