Tags

, , , , , , , ,

One of my favorite poets, again, swept me off my feet, expressing the inexpressible with perfect eloquence.

Poetry

And it was at that age … poetry arrived
in search of me. I don’t know, I don’t know where
it came from, from winter or a river.
I don’t know how or when,
no, they were not voices, they were not
words, nor silence,
but from a street I was summoned
from the branches of night,
abruptly from the others,
among violent fires
or returning alone,
there I was, without a face,
and it touched me.

I didn’t know what to say, my mouth
had no way
with names,
my eyes were blind.
And something started in my soul,
fever or forgotten wings,
and I made my own way,
deciphering
that fire,
and I wrote the first, faint line,
faint, without substance, pure
nonsense,
pure wisdom
of someone who knows nothing;
and suddenly I saw
the heavens
unfastened
and open,
planets,
palpitating plantations,
shadow perforated,
riddled
with arrows, fire, and flowers,
the winding night, the universe.

And I, infinitesimal being,
drunk with the great starry
void,
likeness, image of
mystery,
felt myself a pure part
of the abyss.
I wheeled with the stars.


My heart broke loose on the wind. Pablo Neruda,
Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair, trans. W.S. Merwin (Penguin Classics, 2004)

Illustration by Dorothy Lathrop 1891 – 1980 Stars, 1930, ink on illustration board. Illustration for Sarah Teasdale, Stars Tonight, New York: Macmillan Company, 1930.