"Why do I love" You, Sir?
The Wind does not require the Grass
To answer -- Wherefore when He pass
She cannot keep Her place.
Because He knows -- and
Do not You --
And We know not --
Enough for Us
The Wisdom it be so --
The Lightning -- never asked an Eye
Wherefore it shut -- when He was by --
Because He knows it cannot speak --
And reasons not contained --
-- Of Talk --
There be -- preferred by Daintier Folk --
The Sunrise -- Sire -- compelleth Me --
Because He's Sunrise -- and I see --
Therefore -- Then --
I love Thee --
I love the second line; she starts to answer why she loves him, but then breaks off. How often have I found myself feeling something so strong, and been unable to explain! Instead, she tells him she is as powerless as the grass before the wind, or that her love is like the way an eye blinks at a brilliant light.
I didn't mean to paraphrase Eliot there, but of course:
And would it have been worth it, after all,
Would it have been worth while,
After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets,
After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail along the floor—
And this, and so much more?—
It is impossible to say just what I mean!
But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen:
Would it have been worth while
If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl,
And turning toward the window, should say:
“That is not it at all,
That is not what I meant, at all.”
It occurs to me that what I said was like Prufrock, but the poem I was really thinking of there was Frost:
I have looked down the saddest city lane.
I have passed by the watchman on his beat
And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.
(Acquainted with the Night, second stanza).