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Variations On The Word Love

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Response to “Variations on the Word Love

Margaret Atwood explores the word Love in her poem, “Variations on the Word Love.” She question people’s use of the word love and its various meanings. I really enjoyed Atwood’s poem because made me think and ask questions. I often use the word love, yet I don’t always mean the same thing when I use it. I had never really thought about this until I read her poem.
Atwood first speaks about the overuse of the word. She introduces the poem by saying how we use the word love as a filler. When we can’t think of anything to say, we often fill in space with the word love. The first line begins with “This is a word we use to plug/holes with. It’s the right size for those war/blanks in speech…” (line 1-3). People often use the word love when they don’t know what else to say.
Atwood also speaks about how the word love is often used as an advertisement. The word love is very marketable. We have two holidays to celebrate it, Valentine’s Day and Sweetest Day. We also us love on billboards to sell things completely unrelated. Atwood points out how we have entire magazines that only speak about love. I believe our overuse of the word love takes away from its true meaning. We market it and say we love so many things. This devalues the word love and its meaning.
The second stanza, Atwood begins by talking about what I consider the true meaning of the word love,
Then there’s the two
Of us. This word
Is far too short for us, it has only
Four letter, too sparce
To fill those deep bare
Vacumes between the stars (lines 21-25).

I agree with Atwood. Love is not enough to explain what two people can fall into. The word love is so overused its meaning depreciates. It is so commonly heard that it is not taken seriously. I think that in some ways the word love doesn’t explain “love between two people” or give it justice. However, I...

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