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(7 February 1946 / Liverpool / England)

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And Nothing Is Ever As You Want It To Be

You lose your love for her and then
It is her who is lost,
And then it is both who are lost,
And nothing is ever as perfect as you want it to be.

In a very ordinary world
A most extraordinary pain mingles with the small routines,
The loss seems huge and yet
Nothing can be pinned down or fully explained.

You are afraid.
If you found the perfect love
It would scald your hands,
Rip the skin from your nerves,
Cause havoc with a computered heart.

You lose your love for her and then it is her who is lost.
You tried not to hurt and yet
Everything you touched became a wound.
You tried to mend what cannot be mended,
You tried, neither foolish nor clumsy,
To rescue what cannot be rescued.

You failed,
And now she is elsewhere
And her night and your night
Are both utterly drained.

How easy it would be
If love could be brought home like a lost kitten
Or gathered in like strawberries,
How lovely it would be;
But nothing is ever as perfect as you want it to be.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003
Edited: Wednesday, March 07, 2012


Read poems about / on: lost, loss, home, pain, night, love, world, wind

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Comments about this poem (Sometimes it happens by Brian Patten )

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  • Jemima Rivas (3/18/2014 7:10:00 AM)

    Brian I Love this Poem Its true to live and love :) Its real I've truly felt it ..................... but Should you make them as we want it to be or try to accept it?

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Eugene Levich (3/17/2014 10:18:00 PM)

    Brian,

    This very lovely poem is marred twice by the same glaring grammatical error:

    You lose your love for her and then It is her who is lost, should read:
    ... it is SHE who is lost,

    The verb to be in English (with one exception) in all its conjugations always takes the subject pronoun. (The exception is: Woe is me!)

    I hope I haven't offended by pointing this out; I thought this poem too fine not to be corrected.

    E. Levich

  • Maya Hanson (3/17/2014 11:27:00 AM)

    This is a great write! beautiful

  • Thomas Carolan (3/16/2014 5:23:00 PM)

    this is a true account of the whole meaning of lost love, and then it is both who are lost, I like this poem
    there is so much in all the lines here, I personally INJOYED

  • Shveta Sahal (3/16/2013 2:11:00 AM)

    Last few lines are beautiful! simple and yet so deeeeeeeep..great penning!

  • Apphia Grimonia (3/17/2012 7:32:00 AM)

    i'm impressed after read your poem..it's really beautiful...great poet u are..

  • Phyllis T. Halle (3/16/2012 5:11:00 PM)

    Ah! Brian!
    I thought truth was complicated and you have shown TRUTH in such a simple way.
    I AM DELIGHTED TO HAVE DISCOVERED YOUR WORK.

  • Jasbir Chatterjee (3/16/2012 8:00:00 AM)

    yes, indeed, nothing is ever as perfect as you want it to be...

  • Sally Plumb Plumb (8/22/2009 6:24:00 AM)

    I have read these poems from end to start and they are all beautifully fabulous.

  • Original Unknown Girl (4/9/2008 5:44:00 AM)

    I read this poem in an anthology of poetry and I couldn't believe how spot on Brian is/was.... the final stanza says it all, a very fine poem that deserves its place in the Top 500. HG: -) xx

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