And Nothing Is Ever As You Want It To Be Poem by Brian Patten

And Nothing Is Ever As You Want It To Be

Rating: 4.5

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.

And Nothing Is Ever As You Want It To Be
Sally Plumb Plumb 22 August 2009

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

6 5 Reply
Original Unknown Girl 09 April 2008

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

5 5 Reply
Jasbir Chatterjee 16 March 2012

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

4 5 Reply
Apphia Grimonia 17 March 2012

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

4 4 Reply
Joan Maynard 22 April 2007

I too have long loved this poem... but in the printed version I have the title reads 'And nothing is ever AS PERFECT as you want it to be' Ah, now that's better!

3 5 Reply
Azura : ) 14 February 2024

Poetry is beyond all limits.I am not even native but the way it made me feel is definitely worth feeling.

0 0 Reply
Tom Allport 15 October 2017

a wise worded poem of if only life would be much easier? if only I had gone to Sefton Park school instead of going to Earle Road school I might have turned out to be a proper poet? ......................wonderfully written BP and best wishes.

1 1 Reply
Chloe Knight 24 May 2016

you good at poem you x

0 0 Reply
Chloe Knight 24 May 2016

you are good at poems x

1 0 Reply
Bright And Beautiful 08 May 2015

Language evolves. We no longer use thee and thine and nowadays we’re more likely to use her rather than she in such a sentence. In this poem the use of her is more lyrical than she which sounds distant and more strident. It also adds to the symmetry of the line and is more evocative of the lover’s sadness. A poem, unlike prose has a wide, acceptable margin of syntactic flexibility. There’s nothing to be gained by sticking to grammatical correctness here than it would to punctuate e e cummings. It’s best to let the integral beauty of this poem simply to wash over you.

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Brian Patten

Brian Patten

Liverpool / England
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