What is Love?

A Valentine's Heart

I must confess that I don’t buy into Valentine’s Day. I haven’t bought cards, champagne, and chocolate, and we probably won’t have a candlelit dinner tonight, unless we have a powercut. It’s not that I’m not a romantic person, whatever that is, but rather that I think love should be expressed throughout the year in as genuine a way as possible. Love often isn’t glamorous. It’s rarely hearts and flowers. And I’m fairly sure that the true spirit of romance is completely antithetical to commerce.

So what is it? For me, love is when your eyes meet, and all you see are acceptance and gratitude. It’s the bear hug when you meet again at the end of a long day. It’s the subconscious hand-holding. It’s the spooning 10 minutes after the morning alarm has rung. It’s found in the simple acts of making a cup of tea, running a bath, and rubbing tired shoulders. It’s found in nostalgic memory and the average everyday. It’s sharing money worries, the last of the chocolate, and an umbrella on a rainy day. It’s what binds you together when outside forces try to pull you apart. It’s the joke that only you two understand. It’s the communication without words. It’s the passing of a handkerchief. It’s the reminder to apply sunscreen on a hot day, to smile when things go wrong, to take a photo when the view makes you breathless. It gives you colour in your cheeks and butterflies in your tummy. It inspires, it satisfies, it binds. It’s forgiveness of mistakes and acceptance of faults. It’s… It’s… It’s…

Here’s a a movie scene, a poem and a music video that I think you might enjoy today – saccharine free 🙂
Cinema Paradiso – The Final Scene

In A Bath Teashop by Sir John Betjeman

‘Let us not speak, for the love we bear one another –
Let us hold hands and look.’
She, such a very ordinary little woman;
He, such a thumping crook;
But both, for a moment, little lower than the angels
In the teashop’s ingle-nook.

Better by Tom Baxter

So what is love for you?

P.S. You can join the love-in over at the Tumblr


February 14, 2008. Inspiration.


  1. diane replied:

    Love is when your husband tells you that you are just as beautiful now as on your wedding day – and means it.

  2. mrschili replied:

    I think you’ve very nicely put the impossible-to-express into words. If I were to add to it, I’d say that love is knowing that you belong exactly where you are, and knowing that you’d never wish to be anywhere else.

  3. Robert Hruzek replied:

    I don’t know, Amy; I kinda like celebrating something so universal and positive as love with its own special day. And I say that in the face of the unfortunate sometimes artificial pressure it may bring to bear on relationships.

    All those things you mentioned – well, they SHOULD be (and hopefully ARE) part of every day life. But in my opinion, we can’t celebrate love enough!

  4. amypalko replied:

    That does indeed sound like love, Diane 🙂

    Absolutely, Mrschili. That’s a lovely expression of love!

    I think it’s the commercialism of the event which I most object to, Robert. It creates unrealistic expectations and generates an industry based around artificial interpretations of romance. Real love as it is experienced everyday is the love which should be celebrated all year round. And yeah, you’re right, we can’t celebrate it enough 😉

  5. Penelope Anne replied:

    Love, is simple…unconditional, is the only true kind of love.
    I think I have that with Papa Bear, who got his Valentine in my TT this week.

    Love is the little things you do without having to, when not expected.

  6. Kelly replied:

    Love is patient, love is kind. I love the verses from 1 Corinthians 13. It is such truth. I stuck it up on my blog for today.

    It is the knowing look between parents when children are silly. Its the uplifting wink during a never-ending moment. It’s the whispers of jokes. Its the insanity of 3am and still laughing over old memories.

    Love is not chocolates and flowers and silly cards. Love is daily.

  7. amypalko replied:

    It is in the little things, Penelope Anne. In fact, often its the small gestures that mean the most.

    I actually had that verse read at my wedding, Kelly! And yes, absolutely, love is daily.

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