I'm a Fool to Love You

Cornelius Eady

About the Author: Cornelius Eady

Cornelius Eady was born in New York, 1954. He is an American writer that focuses largely on matters of race and society, His poetry often centers on jazz and blues, family life, violence, and societal problems stemming from questions of race and class. The author's work is often praised for its simple and approachable language.

The Poem

Some folks will tell you the blues is a woman,

Some type of supernatural creature.

My mother would tell you, if she could,

About her life with my father,

A strange and sometimes cruel gentleman.

She would tell you about the choices

A young black woman faces.

Is falling in love with some man

A deal with the devil

In blue terms, the tongue we use

When we don't want nuance

To get in the way,

When we need to talk straight.

My mother chooses my father

After choosing a man

Who was, as we sing it,

Of no account.

This man made my father look good,

That's how bad it was.

He made my father seem like an island

In the middle of a stormy sea,

He made my father look like a rock.

And is the blues the moment you realize

You exist in a stacked deck,

You look in a mirror at your young face,

The face my sister carries,

And you know it's the only leverage

You've got.

Does this create a hurt that whispers

How you going to do?

Is the blues the moment

You shrug your shoulders

And agree, a girl without money

Is nothing, dust

To be pushed around by any old breeze.

Compared to this,

My father seems, briefly,

To be a fire escape.

This is the way the blues works

Its sorry wonders,

Makes trouble look like

A feather bed,

Makes the wrong man's kisses

A healing.

About the poem

In the poem I'm a Fool to Love You, Eady gives the word 'blues' a very specific definition. He uses his mother as example for unsuccessful love. In the 43 lines poem he describes how his mother went from a bad relationship to an even worse one.

At the end he answers his rhetorical question 'What is the blues?' by stating that it can make something awful feel good, when one is only used to the bad.

Behind the poem

I’m A Fool To Love You conveys a simple message through abstract elements. All of us know the feeling of the “blues” when it comes to love.. Not only is the poem extremely personal to Eady, but the meaning relates to everyone at one point in their life. The words are written in a manner to grab the reader’s attention, create an image for the reader, and arouse the reader’s emotions by provoking a personal memory.
2012 POL Champ Kristen Dupard recites "I'm a Fool to Love You" by Cornelius Eady

See this page online:

Big image