The Love Poem

A row of Love Poem prints in red hanging from clothespins in my basement studio.

Around Fall 2014 I was driving to work one night and just thinking about the various problems of the world. How do we go about solving all these problems? Will there always be war and hunger? Will we ever get to a place without so much strife?

Of course I am not the first person to ask and answer these questions. Elvis Costello put it more eloquently with “What’s So Funny About Peace, Love, And Understanding?” And The Beatles declared early in their career “All You Need Is Love.” Love is the cornerstone of many religions and philosophies.

Today, particularly in the West, love has become a commodity like many other things. When we talk about love, too often we use it to talk about romance or sex. Even as I acknowledge these faults, I do not easily tell friends and family that I love them for reasons that it might take a dozen therapists years to discover.

In any case, I wrote this thing that I’ve mostly called “The Love Poem.” For a long time I thought I would turn it into some kind of print or poster. I was inspired in part by The Holstee Manifesto, a framed copy of which is on display in my living room.

I have made attempts at illustrating this poem or doing something interesting with typography or handwriting. None of them have satisfied me.

In October 2023 I finally printed a small production run of a minimalist design in two colorways: Black and red.

The Love Poem is now available for sale in my online storefront.

Download “The Love Poem”

Handmade print not in your budget?

Treat yourself to a free printable download.

Available in both US Letter and A4 sizes.

Pay what you want.

The Love Poem goes like this:


Will not yield.
Will not cease. 

Says, “Citizens of Earth,
we come in peace!” 

Opens doors.
Fights no wars.

Takes creepy crawly spiders
from the bedroom floor,
and places them gently, unharmed, outdoors

Donates blood
despite the needle’s stick,

Because someone elsewhere
is injured or sick.

Gets together to study.
Does not grouse.

Says, “Hey buddy,
this one’s on the house.”

Says, “I’m going to quit smoking,
eat right, and exercise more;

So I can stick around longer
and watch love flourish like never before!”

Wastes not and fixes
broken components.

Puts the toilet seat down
(it takes just a moment).

Says, “Forget third quarter earnings
and dollar amounts;

It’s our customers, employees, and long-term prosperity that counts.”

Is patient
and is kind.

Can not, will not,
be left behind.

Does not envy.
Does not boast.

Helps dig ditches
and mend fence posts.

Love may not be all that we need,

But you can’t have too much;

It’s what we need most indeed.

Get your copy of
The Love Poem

Written, designed, and hand printed by the artist in DeKalb, Illinois.

Available in red and black.