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Darrel Bristow-Bovey: “The Problem with Love Stories is That They’re About Love, Rather Than Life”

Darrel Bristow-Bovey’s latest column for Random House Struik, “Reflections on love”:

Recently I’ve been thinking about love stories. Perhaps it’s because I am myself in love. I am no longer young and have been in love before, so maybe that’s why it feels as if all the love stories we most love are either incomplete or overly complete – they either stop when love is attained and before life begins, or they stop when someone dies or flies away from a misty airfield with the letters of transit.

The best-loved love stories aren’t about ways to live with love, they’re about tragic loss and noble sacrifice. These stories no longer inspire me. I don’t want to lose things or sacrifice things for love; I want a love that lets me live and work and be happy and make someone else happy. The problem with love stories is that they’re about love, rather than life.

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