21 pages 42 minutes read

E. E. Cummings

[love is more thicker than forget]

Fiction | Poem | Adult | Published in 1939

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I Carry Your Heart with Me by E.E. Cummings (1952)

One of the most familiar and often recited of Cummings’s love poems, this lyric, written late in Cummings’s career, offers a striking comparison of Cummings when he opts to write a more conventional poem, a poem that presents its argument, just as sweet and just as upbeat as “love is more thicker than forget” and similarly about how love fuses two separate hearts, but in a far more traditional structure.

Fast Anchor’d Eternal, O Love! by Walt Whitman (1882)

One of Whitman’s least-known love lyrics, one that appeared in his controversial Calamus collection, this short poem captures the essence of Cummings’s argument but without the flash and daring of Cummings’s formal experimentation. Cummings often acknowledged his debt to Whitman’s liberation of American verse from the historical weight of British formal structures. Here, Whitman asserts defiantly and honestly the physical and spiritual dimensions of love.

In Excelsis by Amy Lowell (1922)

Along with Gertrude Stein, Amy Lowell exerted the most profound impact on Cummings’s development as a young poet. Here, Lowell’s exploration of love reveals her influence on Cummings. Although her lines are fuller, more traditional in the use of figurative language, and more lyrical than Cummings, the poem explores the same argument that Cummings would pursue: the contradictory nature of love that is as much physical as it is spiritual, as easy to understand as it is impossible to grasp.