Friday, March 25, 2011


Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor's now infamous love affair spanned 20 years and two marriages. The tumultuous romance was complicated by their mutual dependency on alcohol, but there is no denying it was a tremendous love - the kind of love that inspires art. Here are some excerpts from Richard Burton's love letters to Elizabeth Taylor.

"I lust after your smell … and your round belly and the exquisite softness of the inside of your thighs and your baby-bottom and your giving lips & the half-hostile look in your eyes when you’re deep in rut with your little Welsh stallion" 

"One of these days I will wake up--which I think I have done already--and realize to myself that I really do love. I find it very difficult to allow my whole life to rest on the existence of another creature. I find it equally difficult, because of my innate arrogance, to believe in the idea of love. There is no such thing, I say to myself. There is lust, of course, and usage, and jealousy, and desire and spent powers, but no such thing as the idiocy of love. Who invented that concept? I have wracked my shabby brains and can find no answer."

"You must know, of course, how much I love you. You must know, of course, how badly I treat you. But the fundamental and most vicious, swinish, murderous, and unchangeable fact is that we totally misunderstand each other ... we operate on alien wave-lengths. You are as distant as Venus--planet, I mean--and I am tone-deaf to the music of the spheres. But how-so-be-it nevertheless. (a cliche among Welsh politicians.) I love you and I always will. Come back to me as soon as you can ...”

From his diary:
"In my poor and tormented youth, I had always dreamed of this woman. And now, when this dream occasionally returns, I extend my arm, and she is here ... by my side. If you have not met or known her, you have lost much in life."

“A girl sitting on the other side of the pool lowered her book, took off her sunglasses and looked at me. She was lavish. She was a dark, unyielding largesse. She was, in sort, too bloody much, and not only that she was ignoring me. Her breasts were apocalyptic, they would topple empires.”

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