Ted Hughes’s tragic relationships
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On this day in 1930 Ted Hughes, British Poet Laureate was born.
Apart from his poetry, Hughes is mostly famous for his love life. Married to American poet Sylvia Plath for seven years, she committed suicide after he left her for Assia Wevill, whom he later married. Tragically, Wevill also committed suicide, killing their young child as well. Hughes was devastated and stopped writing for several years.
His third marriage in 1970 was successful and he lived quietly for a further twenty-eight years in both Devon and Yorkshire. Here is a famous poem by George Herbert that has helped many people struggling to recover from devastating tragedies:
Love bade me welcome; yet my soul drew back,
Guilty of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning
If I lack’d anything.
‘A guest,’ I answer’d, ‘worthy to be here:’
Love said, ‘You shall be he.’
‘I, the unkind, ungrateful? Ah, my dear,
I cannot look on Thee.’
Love took my hand and smiling did reply,
‘Who made the eyes but I?’
‘Truth, Lord; but I have marr’d them: let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.’
‘And know you not,’ says Love, ‘Who bore the blame?’
‘My dear, then I will serve.’
‘You must sit down,’ says Love, ‘and taste my meat.’
So I did sit and eat.
Today I ask that I will be able to handle whatever happens in life, however difficult that may be.