The Chemistry & Poetry of Love
You’ve met this person that makes your heart race a little faster and you’re wondering “Could this be love?” Well, you have come to the right place. Today we will investigate on the chemistry of love and delight in the poetry of Pablo Neruda. Today I share with you as well a painting on a 6″ x 6″ tile that was inspired by the LOVEly theme.
|“Could this be love?”
handpainted ceramic tile
by paulina constancia
There are a lot of chemicals racing around your brain and body when you’re in love. Researchers are gradually learning more and more about the roles they play both when we are falling in love and when we’re in long-term relationships. Of course, estrogen and testosterone play a role in the sex drive area. Without them, we might never venture into the “real love” arena.
That initial giddiness that comes when we’re first falling in love includes a racing heart, flushed skin and sweaty palms. Researchers say this is due to the dopamine, norepinephrine and phenylethylamine we’re releasing. Dopamine is thought to be the “pleasure chemical,” producing a feeling of bliss. Norepinephrine is similar to adrenaline and produces the racing heart and excitement. According to Helen Fisher, anthropologist and well-known love researcher from Rutgers University, together these two chemicals produce elation, intense energy, sleeplessness, craving, loss of appetite and focused attention. She also says, “The human body releases the cocktail of love rapture only when certain conditions are met and … men more readily produce it than women, because of their more visual nature.”
The Poetry of Love
I have to admit that until I saw the Italian movie Il Postino*,I wasn’t that curious about Pablo Neruda and his works. And like most people, it wasn’t until Robin Williams read these excerpts below in the movie Patch Adams that I found out about Soneto XVII. So pure and powerful are Neruda’s words that the reader can’t help but yearn for true love.
*A simple Italian postman learns to love poetry while delivering mail to the famous poet Neruda; he uses this to woo local beauty Beatrice.
Watch some clips from the movie
Excerpts from Pablo Neruda’s Soneto XVII
from Cien sonetos de amor
Te amo sin saber cómo, ni cuándo, ni de dónde,
te amo directamente sin problemas ni orgullo:
así te amo porque no sé amar de otra manera,
sino así de este modo en que no soy ni eres,
tan cerca que tu mano sobre mi pecho es mía,
tan cerca que se cierran tus ojos con mi sueño.
(Lee el resto del poema en español)
I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.
I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride;
so I love you because I know no other way
than this: where “I” does not exist, nor “you”,
so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,
so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.
(Read the rest of the poem in English)
If you’re curious about my tile artwork, “Could this be love?”
Here’s how you can make one yourself….
- Go to your favourite paint-your-own ceramics studio.
- Pick a 6″x6″ tile.
- Fill the space with two people staring at each other and about to kiss.
- Add your choice of filling elements; for example: hearts,flowers, stripes and swirls, dots and text, etc.
- For inspiration, bring that love to the table and paint on.