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poem of the day

February 17, 2010

Pablo Neruda’s Love Sonnet XVII:

I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz,
or the arrow of carnations the fire shoots off.
I love you as certain dark things are to be loved,
in secret, between the shadow and the soul.

I love you as the plant that never blooms
but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers;
thanks to your love a certain solid fragrance,
risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body.

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.
I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride;
so I love you because I know no other way

than this: where I does not exist, nor you,
so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,
so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.

– pablo neruda

The line that really gets me, here, is

“I love you as certain dark things are to be loved/in secret, between the shadow and the soul.”

I adore a poet who can flirt with the darkness – can appeal to my own dark side, can engage with it and not shun it but almost encourage it, feed it, fan it. You wonder how the darkness adds to the creative process. I had my palm read and was told that I had to be careful of submitting too much to the darkness. What happens then? Do I devolve? Do I dissolve? Do I have a psychotic break?

more on that later. urness is here.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. March 1, 2010 5:04 pm

    YES. Neruda is the king of my loins. When I lived in Chile I would hang out at his houses (which are now museums) and weep. Sigh.

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