I’m not sure how many couples read romantic passages to each other every night, but perhaps Valentine’s Day is a good day to start … but where? Here’s a sampling of poetry and books that will help you start reading romantic to your mate.
1. Arthur Rimbaud.
This French poet wrote prolifically and often of love. His work is romantic and fanciful, without being sappy. Here’s a sampling of one of my favorites verses:
Not a word, not a thought:
Boundless love will surge through my soul,
And I will wander far away, a vagabond
In Nature - as happily as with a woman.
Two good poems to start out with are “The First Evening” and “Romance.”
2. Pablo Neruda.
The Spanish poet has numerous books of poetry centering on love. His classic, “Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair,” is a great one; also see “Captains’ Verse: Poems of Love.”
3. Elizabeth Barrett Browning.
Her classic poem, “How Do I Love Thee?” is so rife with compliments, it is sure to charm. “Sonnets from the Portuguese” is a good place to start—plus it makes a great gift, especially limited edition versions.
The 13th century mystic is considered by some to be the greatest poet in the world. His work often centered on love, human desire, and emotions. Check out his book The Love Poems of Rumi.
1. If you’re looking for erotica, try Anais Nin’s Sweet Life: Erotic Fantasies for Couples.
2. Claiming of Sleeping Beauty, by Anne Rice. Well known author Anne Rice penned this book under the pseudonym A.N. Roqulaure because of its racy content. It tells a twist of sleeping beauty who, in this story, awakes to find herself under the control of a prince.
3. Love Is a Mix Tape, by Rob Sheffield. Although this book sounds heartbreaking in the end, the rest of it sounds like a sweet tribute to music and love. Sheffiled is a music writer for Rolling Stone whose wife died unexpectedly from a pulmonary embolism. He tells the story of their lives and love of music through the songs on fifteen mixed tapes.
4. The Time Traveler’s Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger. This book has an interesting plot line, incorporating science fiction and fascinating characters, but is ultimately a sweet love story. It’s one of those books you don’t want to end.
Related Story: Romance and Suspense for a Rainy Afternoon: Up at the Villa