Here’s a fun quiz for people who like quizzes. I got Pablo Neruda, which was a relief, because I totally thought I’d get Emily Dickinson. I like Emily, but I don’t want to be her, y’know? I get a little claustrophobic just thinking about living in the same town for more than three years. Confining myself to a single room sounds like a nightmare. And I’ve been in love with Neruda since I was a sophomore in college. Anyway, fellow poets, here is a poem by Neruda. Let me know who you “are” in the comments below!
One Hundred Sonnets: XVII
by Pablo Neruda
trans. Mark Eisner
I don’t love you as if you were a rose of salt, topaz,
or arrow of carnations that propagate fire:
I love you as one loves certain obscure things,
secretly, between the shadow and the soul.
I love as the plant that doesn’t bloom but carries
the light of those flowers, hidden, within itself,
and thanks to your love the tight aroma that arose
from the earth lives dimly in my body.
I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where,
I love you directly without problems or pride:
I love you like this because I don’t know any other way to love,
except in this form in which I am not nor are you,
so close that your hand upon my chest is mine,
so close that your eyes close with my dreams.