Valentine Poems

by Susan J. Bryant (February 2024)

The Lovers, Marc Chagall, 1913-14


He doesn’t love me…

He doesn’t love me with a bold bouquet
Or scented petals strewn on silken sheets.
He doesn’t love me with a trite cliché
Of lacy lingerie and ribboned treats.
He doesn’t love me with a mini-break—
Some saucy weekend spree down by the sea.
He loves me with a heat that makes me ache—
A fire that rips the ragged breath from me.
He loves me with the mysteries of the moon,
The bliss of stars and whispers of the dark.
He loves me with the shiver and the swoon
Of dawn’s fierce kiss—the blush, the rush, the spark.
He doesn’t love me with a fleeting vow—
He loves me with forever … starting now.




The day she sucked sage butter from her finger,
The hour she gulped her brimming goblet dry,
The minute he saw glinting green eyes linger
On kirsch-soaked cherries oozing from that pie,
He knew her appetite was huge and healthy.
She lapped up all life tossed upon her plate.
He reveled in this banqueter, so wealthy
In all the traits that mattered on a date.
At Botticelli’s Bistro, what an eyeful
He had of this voracious sorceress.
He ogled as she gobbled sherry trifle—
She feasted with a gastronome’s finesse.

This breathless bout of mastication led
To peachy years of breakfasting in bed.



Could it be Love?
a pantoum

My wits are kissed. Could it be love?
My brain is drained of all but you.
I’m cuckoo as a cooing dove.
I have an over-rosy view.

My brain is drained of all but you.
A giggle tickles tipsy lips.
I have an over-rosy view.
My skin sings songs of fingertips.

A giggle tickles tipsy lips.
My thoughts trip on the edge of blue.
My skin sings songs of fingertips.
Is this just lust or is it true?

My thoughts trip on the edge of blue.
My days are dipped in fairy dust.
Is this just lust or is it true?
My heart’s a tad too high to trust.

My days are dipped in fairy dust.
I’m cuckoo as a cooing dove.
My heart’s a tad too high to trust…
My wits are kissed. Could it be love?


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Susan Jarvis Bryant is originally from the U.K., but now lives on the coastal plains of Texas. Susan has poetry published on The Society of Classical Poets, Lighten Up Online, Snakeskin, Light, Sparks of Calliope, and Expansive Poetry Online. She also has poetry published in The Lyric, Trinacria, and Beth Houston’s Extreme Formal Poems and Extreme Sonnets II anthologies. Susan is the winner of the 2020 International SCP Poetry Competition and was nominated for the 2022 Pushcart Prize. She has just published her first two books, Elephants Unleashed and Fern Feathered Edges.

Follow NER on Twitter @NERIconoclast