Open Space at The Zoo Fence

Back to Open Space

About Love
Elsa Joy Bailey

Elsa Joy Bailey is a dear friend of The Zoo Fence, and we are truly delighted to have her presence on Open Space. You will find more of her work at TZF’s Ampers&nd. Elsa Joy’s web site,, is an internet landmark, and rightly so. To those few who have not already bookmarked it, we recommend a visit.

About Love

It’s the substance of you,
the substance of me.
But what is it?

Words are helpless;
words can only hint.
We don’t know what It is;
we only know that It is.
Which is enough.

Love is what springs up
when you’re looking
in the other direction;
what rushes in
when your definitions drop away.
When you absolutely
don’t know anything
whatsoever anymore,
there It is--
painting Itself madly across your life
with sudden strokes
and unexpectedly rash ink.

Love follows no rules;
has no uniform behavior;
can not be contained in a jar.

Love is what happens when
you disappear into thin air.
Then It’s the ground
holding up your feet;
the rain scrubbing the trees;
a flower sneezing perfume;
opulent sun;
the brilliance of a child’s eye;
warm fingers, warm toes;
a lover wrapping you up
in a 20 pound smile;
hot cocoa on an ice cold night.
It’s music, It’s silence;
It’s an old rubber band
that accidentally
falls out in the shape of a heart.

But don’t think Love
is all yeses and no noes:
Love walks backward near anger;
It refuses to chat
with bleakness or density;
and It vanishes entirely
when you try to box it in.
Love is smarter than all of us
put together.

Make a deal with yourself now
to forget everything you ever knew
about Love;
It never cares what you think

Just give It
breathing room:
if you sense It’s hanging around,
shut up and listen.
Because Love is the God Within
hurling Itself into your world
to sweeten the pictures.
It heals, It creates,
It inspires, It unites.

Often It removes
the unnecessary.
Yes, and It can heat up parts of you
that are dead from neglect,
if you don’t question Its methods.
We see a kiss and say that’s Love...
but the truth is Love is Love
and the kiss
is a poor shadow on the wall
trying to live up to the Real Thing.

One more time:
Love is what happens when
you disappear into thin air.
Disappear as fast as you can
– you won’t miss the weight.
you’ll watch Love float you
into sanity, into realness,
into inspiration.
Then, with Love as your lens,
you can collect smiles like flowers
and hold them alive in your heart.

Oh yes you can.

Open Space