Love and Lust In every intimate relationship the partners have two choices of emotion; to either be in love or lust. According to Merriam-Webster (2010) love is, “a strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties” and it states that lust is “an intense or unbridled sexual desire” (para. 1). In the poems “Cherrylog Road” by James L. Dickey and “Leaving the Motel” by W. D. Snodgrass secrets of love and lust are expressed through the eyes of the lovers. In the poem “Cherrylog Road” the male speaker is jumping from car to car in a junkyard waiting for his beloved Doris Holbrook to meet him.
The poem states that, “For I knew that Doris Holbrook would escape from her father at noon” (Dickey, 2011, p. 522), this depicts the idea that Doris Holbrook’s father did not approve of her relationship with the narrator, in turn making their meeting a secret. One part of the poem that shows the narrator is not simply waiting for Doris for the physical aspects of their relationship is when he states that he is, “praying for Doris Holbrook to come from her father’s farm” (Dickey, 2011, p. 523), mentioning also that he cannot wait to hold her close.
He also shows compassion by stating that he wishes for her to “get back with no trace of me on her face, to be seen by her red-haired father who would change, in the squalling barn, her back’s pale skin with a strop” (Dickey, 2011, p. 523). He is concerned that Doris will get physically reprimanded by her father if he were to find out about the two’s relationship. Doris’s love for the narrator is shown through her willingness to risk being caught by her father and the risk of abuse from him. When the two finally meet, the narrator explains how he “held her and held her and held her” (Dickey, 2011, p. 23), showing how he is not just excited for the sexual aspect of their meeting, but also for the emotional aspect of simply holding his beloved. After the two have their rendezvous, they part their separate ways, Doris back to her father’s farm and the narrator back to his motorcycle. A poem that focuses more on the lustful side of a relationship is W. D Snodgrass’s “Leaving the Motel. ” This poem tells the story of a man and a woman leaving a motel after they have sexually enjoyed each other’s company for what could have been a full night or just a few hours.
The woman is narrating and is going through a check list of precautions that the two need to make sure of before they leave the motel. She tells the man to, “fold your collar” (Snodgrass, 2011, p. 477), which could mean the man met the woman after work, maybe even possibly told his wife he was working late in order to meet with the mystery woman in order to have the affair. The narrator continues with the check list by stating, “keep things straight, don’t take the matches, the wrong keyrings-we’ve nowhere we could keep a keepsake—ashtrays, combs, things that sooner or later others would accidentally find” (Snodgrass, 2011, p. 77). This part of the poem shows how the two were lustful for a moment but now want nothing more than to keep their rendezvous a secret. The narrator then states that, “should such things get lonely […] preserve our lilacs, the wayside flowers we’ve gathered” (Snodgrass, 2011, p. 478). According to the birth stone index, violets are derived from the word “vias” meaning wayside and represent humility and chastity; this is a perfect representation of the two’s relationship (Birthstone index. para 3).
In both poems ideas of sexual intercourse are present but in two completely different forms. In “Cherrylog Road” the two young individuals are experiencing love and compassion for one another. In the poem “Leaving the Motel” the two older individuals are experiencing lust and lack of devotion for one another. Roses are red, violets are blue, roses for love and violets for lust too. References Birthstone Index. (2010). Retrieved April 6, 2010, from http://www. birthstoneindex. com/ Dickey, J. (2011). Cherrylog road. In A.
Booth and K. Mays (Eds. ), The Norton introduction to literature (10th ed. ), (pp. 521-524). New York: Norton. Love. (2010). In Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. Retrieved April 6, 2010, from http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary Lust. (2010). In Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. Retrieved April 6, 2010, from http://www. merriam-webster. com/dictionary Snodgrass, W. D. (2011). Leaving the motel. In A. Booth and K. Mays (Eds. ), The Norton introduction to literature (10th ed. ), (pp. 477-478) New York: Norton.