Monday, January 21, 2008


My Aunt and Uncle just returned from Chile, where they visited Pablo Neruda's nautical themed home in Valparaiso. They said it was quite the experience, reflecting aspects of a ship in every room. My uncle told me that in fact Neruda was not a sailor, and was in fact deathly afraid of the water. I find this compelling based upon the imagery in so many of his poems is based on waves, water, and cyclical gravitation...oh the irony of fear and desire.

At any rate, a poem on a Sunday.

Love by Pablo Neruda

What's wrong with you, with us,
what's happening to us?
Ah our love is a harsh cord
that binds us wounding us
and if we want
to leave our wound,
to separate,
it makes a new knot for us and condemns us
to drain our blood and burn together.

What's wrong with you? I look at you
and I find nothing in you but two eyes
like all eyes, a mouth
lost among a thousand mouths that I have kissed, more beautiful,
a body just like those that have slipped
beneath my body without leaving any memory.

And how empty you went through the world
like a wheat-colored jar
without air, without sound, without substance!
I vainly sought in you
depth for my arms
that dig, without cease, beneath the earth:
beneath your skin, beneath your eyes,
beneath your double breast scarcely
a current of crystalline order
that does not know why it flows singing.
Why, why, why,
my love, why?

No comments: