7 Heartbreaking Poems About Love, Because Literature Is The Best Cure For The Lovesick

Though the great, wonderful, and wise Maya Angelou wrote, "Love recognizes no barriers," anyone who's dealing with heartbreak knows that... well, that's not always the case. Sucky as it may be, love often knows barriers all too well. Striving for love, dealing with unrequited love, falling out of love... you name it, and there's another heartbreaking situation involving the heart.

You know that friend who tries to convince you that your heartache is the sign of a tremendously character-building experience? Yeah, that's not me. Sure, I believe that weathering emotional drizzles and deluges is important, but I just don't believe turmoil always leads to growth. Still, whether you consider tough situations to be learning situations or not, you've probably dealt with the pain of falling out of love. And if that's the case, you know that, really, only hindsight lets you see that pain through rose-colored glasses.

OK, OK. I don't mean to be maudlin. Frankly, there is a silver lining to dealing with heartbreak. That, dear readers, is literature. Literature was made for (and by) folks whose hearts are aching. Literature was invented to express the inexpressible, the pains to deep to articulate. Literature is your friend when you're lovesick, and these seven poems are just what you need.

1. "My Kingdom for a Murmur of Fanfare" by Kaveh Akbar

It’s common to live properly, to pretend
you don’t feel heat or grief:

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2. "A Maiden" by Elizabeth Willis

If watching is the manufacturer, and I lose you
what angel takes the place of a dowry
or distance in this leaf action?

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3. "The Emptiness of Thought" by James K. Zimmerman

the expansiveness of the bed
the birds still singing
the remnants of the smell
of coffee in the morning

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4. "A Pity, We Were Such a Good Invention" by Yehuda Amichai

They dismantle us
Each from the other.

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5. "Like a Real Flame" by Melissa Broder

And O I want to be fixed
But I am already fixed
Why don’t I feel it

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6. "I am Trying to Break Your Heart" by Kevin Young

I want to wear
your smile on my sleeve
& break
your heart like a horse
or its leg.

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7. "The Idea of Revelation" by Tina Chang

Wind that desired backward. Ring
the alarm. When you wake, no more
pain. A mirror like a window looking out.

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