Valerie Eliot, 1926-2012

Sometimes odd factoids bring periods of time to life in a 6-degrees-of-separation sort of way. I enjoyed learning that John Adams attended a play with Voltaire while he was in France, for example. And it's interesting that T.S. Eliot's 2nd wife, Valerie, just passed away. Poor dear, her obit is more about him than her. But then, she got this while still alive to enjoy it:

A Dedication to My Wife
To whom I owe the leaping delight
That quickens my senses in our wakingtime
And the rhythm that governs the repose of our sleepingtime,
The breathing in unison.

Of lovers whose bodies smell of each other

Who think the same thoughts without need of speech
And babble the same speech without need of meaning...

No peevish winter wind shall chill

No sullen tropic sun shall wither
The roses in the rose garden which is ours and ours only

But this dedication is for others to read:

These are private words addressed to you in public.

Update: Since there's a bit of an age gap between Mr. W. & me, I was telling him about Tom & Viv and asking how come he doesn't write me poetry like this. But he says he does, it's just not poetry, it's speeches. Upon reflection, it's true. To win my heart anew, he has only to rush down with boyish enthusiasm from his study with a new reflection on the timeless principles of the Declaration applied to some current controversy, and I get all aflutter with admiration and twue wuv once more. We suit each other perfectly, but have the weirdest courtship rituals.