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Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

love's language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox is a beautiful love poem that describes the different languages love speaks. The poet the first and last lines throughout the five stanzas of this poem. As clearly emphasized by Ella Wheeler Wilcox, love speaks, and she explains how in this poem- it is first physical, then emotional, then through actions and inactions of lovers.

The emphatic poem Love’s language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox makes one agree to the signs she talks about, wanting us to explore love through its different languages.

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Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Love's language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

How does Love speak?

In the faint flush upon the telltale cheek,

And in the pallor that succeeds it; by

The quivering lid of an averted eye–

The smile that proves the parent to a sigh

Thus doth Love speak.

How does Love speak?

By the uneven heart-throbs, and the freak

Of bounding pulses that stand still and ache,

While new emotions, like strange barges, make

Along vein-channels their disturbing course;

Still as the dawn, and with the dawn’s swift force–

Thus doth Love speak.


How does Love speak?

In the avoidance of that which we seek–

The sudden silence and reserve when near–

The eye that glistens with an unshed tear–

The joy that seems the counterpart of fear,

As the alarmed heart leaps in the breast,

And knows, and names, and greets its godlike guest–

Thus doth Love speak.


How does Love speak?

In the proud spirit suddenly grown meek–

The haughty heart grown humble; in the tender

And unnamed light that floods the world with splendor;

In the resemblance which the fond eyes trace

In all fair things to one beloved face;

In the shy touch of hands that thrill and tremble;

In looks and lips that can no more dissemble–

Thus doth Love speak.


How does Love speak?

In the wild words that uttered seem so weak

They shrink ashamed in silence; in the fire

Glance strikes with glance, swift flashing high and higher,

Like lightnings that precede the mighty storm;

In the deep, soulful stillness; in the warm,

Impassioned tide that sweeps through throbbing veins,

Between the shores of keen delights and pains;

In the embrace where madness melts in bliss,

And in the convulsive rapture of a kiss–

Thus doth Love speak.

Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox Summary

Love's language love poem

Every stanza in Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox begins with the same question, “How does love speak?” Of course, the question is rhetorical, and the answer is profound. There are physical signs of love in the initial stages, like a blush on the cheek and the shivering of an eyelid. And then, of course, there’s the shy smile that precedes a lover’s smile.

The poet moves to the second stanza, describing some more physical symptoms of love’s language. The heartbeat is high, but it is not stable. It jumps, and then suddenly, the lover doesn’t feel their heartbeat at all. All of this causes an emotional ache because a lover is confused with how they should feel or handle their feelings of growing love.

Further in the love poem Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox, the poet uses the word “barrage” to express the whirlpool of the lover’s emotions which one cannot foresee. She compares the alterations in the pace of the lover’s heartbeat to the still of dawn and swift force, which is precisely how it feels.

The third stanza of Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox is indeed one of the most impactful and beautiful ones from the poem, where she described a few more physical symptoms of falling in love. Sometimes, there’s utmost silence, the source of which no one knows to date. And then there’s the feeling of joy that shows through a glistening eye that never sheds a tear. The phrase, “The joy that seems the counterpart of fear,” is profound. It expresses just how fear is a part of the joy in love.

Undoubtedly, the third stanza of Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox gets a poetry enthusiast in full spirits with the varied comparisons of joy combined with fear with an alarming heart that leaps in the breast. Ella’s understanding of love’s language is exceptional.

A lot of changes when one falls in love, and Wilcox catches those emotions with such particularity. Those who roam in pride become meek, and the haughty heart humbles itself. The expressions change from this stanza in Love’s language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox from physical to emotional. She then talks about an “unnamed light” that appears out of nowhere to a person who’s in love. But that light is powerful enough to make the world look like a splendor.

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And then comes the phase, when no matter where the lover looks, all they can see is the person’s face who they love. Ultimately, the poet comes back to express a few more physical expressions of love, like a shy touch and trembling hands. Altogether, the lover can no longer hide their love because the face gives away their feelings. The fourth stanza of Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox is a beautiful blend of how a person undergoes a total transformation when in love.

In the concluding stanza of Love’s Language by Ella Wheelove's languageler Wilcox, the poet links everything with nature. She starts by calling love weak as opposed to the strength of fire and lightning. Wilcox expresses the same using the phrase “ashamed in silence.” She compares the first few glances between lovers to the lightning that decorates the sky before a storm.

The feeling of love is like the tides that the lover feels through their veins, where there are mixed emotions of happiness and pain. In the last few lines, the poet concludes that the feelings of madness and joy go hand-in-hand when in love, and so it is fair to experience both in equal amounts. In the end, love speaks oh so clearly with a kiss and rapture!

Love’s Language by Ella Wheeler Wilcox is a spell-binding piece of wordy art that conveys the language spoken by love in the most unique way ever. If you enjoyed reading the poem and its summary, let us know through your likes and rating below. And of course, it’s never too late to subscribe to us to receive regular updates on the latest from Love Smitten!

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Hemali Adhiya

Hemali Adhiya is the co-founder and author of the e-magazine Love Smitten. Alongside writing and editing for several other websites, she hosts a YouTube Channel- Total Angrezi. Traveling is her way to unwind, and she loves recording these experiences!

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