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We constantly compare one thing with another, or attempt to, saying, "Well, you know, love is like ... it's like ... well, YOU know what it's like." Here Bob King, who lives in Colorado, takes an original approach and compares love to the formation of rocks.


I know the origin of rocks, settling

out of water, hatching crystals

from fire, put under pressure

in various designs I gathered

pretty, picnic after picnic.

And I know about love, a little,

igneous lust, the slow affections

of the sedimentary, the pressure

on earth out of sight to rise up

into material, something solid

you can hold, a whole mountain,

for example, or a loose collection

of pebbles you forgot you were keeping.


Reprinted from the Marlboro Review, Issue 16, 2005, by permission of the author. Copyright 2005 by Robert King, whose prose book, Stepping Twice Into the River: Following Dakota Waters, appeared in 2005 from the University Press of Colorado. This weekly column is supported by the Poetry Foundation, the Library of Congress, and the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. This column does not accept unsolicited poetry.

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