chapter  2
14 Pages

Love among Objects

Poetry and Time in Light of the Phenomenology of Values
ByJacek Mydla

This chapter discusses the idea of love in the context of a values-oriented theory of poetry, which regards poetry as an expression of the human mode of being-in-the-world. In a universal sense, love is a propensity towards any object as a bearer of some value; in the context of personalism- understood in broad terms as theories which posit the central position of the human being. John Donne's preoccupation with love as a transcendent, almost otherworldly realm, one which is elevated above the mundane and material environment, depicted through the metonymic and synecdochic references to objects. Like love and poetry, time may seem to stand aloof and apart from things; but the created abstraction is soon exposed as little more than a fossilized attitude. The intellectual tensions unleashed by a poem like "The Canonization"- and those which give it its energies- are precisely those that make love possible in the first place.