One of the most basic needs of all human beings is to love and be loved. Since the beginning of human history, we, as a species, have used words to express love in many forms, including: romantic love, family love, friendship, erotic love, love of nature and love of humanity. Love is a common theme in contemporary poetry.
The kind of love we most often hear about in contemporary literature is romantic love.
Birthdays, Valentine’s Day, weddings and anniversaries are popular occasions to share love poems. Fairly recent developments in information technology, such as smartphone dating applications and social media, have changed how we meet people and keep in touch. You can find love poems about attraction, falling in love, being in a relationship, keeping the flame going and even breaking up. Not all of these relationships occur between a man and a woman. More and more people accept different forms of desire, relationship and identity (homosexuality, bisexuality, asexuality, pansexuality, transgenderism, etc.). This growing acceptance is reflected in contemporary poetry.
Family is also a common topic in love poems: parent-child love, sibling love, love for pets, etc.
A high divorce rate, mobility, remarriage and adoption by same-sex couples have profoundly changed the way families have been structured from the latter half of the twentieth century until présent day. Thanks to new technology, it is easier to keep in touch with relatives who live far away. You can read poems about these different kinds of families.
Erotic love is another way of expressing this universal emotion and contemporary poetry does not lack for quality work on this important aspect of human health and well-being. Sensuality and intimacy permeate these poems. There is also an appreciation of beauty that is sometimes combined with visual art forms such as painting, photography, drawing, etc.
Today, with climate change being one of humanity’s most pressing challenges, poems about the planet remind us of how fragile Mother Nature is and of our responsibility to her. Nature has been a widespread subject in poetry throughout history, but more and more poems are being written about the environmental issues facing planet Earth now.