Painting by Alexander Smith ©

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Sonnet No 16 From - One Hundred Love Sonnets - In - The Poetry of Pablo Neruda

I am reading my way through a very large book of poetry. This large tome is "The Poetry of Pablo Neruda" - Edited and with an introduction by Ilan Stavins.
I particularly like his love sonnets and count myself lucky as there are more than just the one hundred love poems from the 100 sonnets section - there are also his famous "Veinte Poemas De Amor Y Una Cancion Desesperada - Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair" and many more throughout this book - what a feast!!


SONNET XVI

I love the handful of the earth you are.
Because of its meadows, vast as a planet,
I have no other star. You are my replica
of the multiplying universe

Your wide eyes, are the only light I know
from extinguished constellations;
your skin throbs like the streak
of a meteor through rain.

Your hips were that much of the moon for me;
your deep mouth and its delights, that much sun;
your heart, fiery with its long red rays,

was that much ardent light, like honey in the shade.
So I pass across your burning form, kissing
you - compact and planetary, my dove, my globe.
.

4 comments:

Delwyn said...

Mr Neruda is some poet...
I like the way he likens her to a 'replica of the multiplying universe'

we are each a little universe containing all the mysteries of humanity and evolution, and at the same time a planet in the wondrous universe of consciousness.

Janice said...

Neruda reminds me of the Song of Songs, and of the movie 'Keeping Mum', which, if you haven't seen, you really must. I tend to like poets that are a little more hard hitting, such as Dorothy Parker. Here's one of my favorites:

Interior

Her mind lives in a quiet room,
A narrow room, and tall,
With pretty lamps to quench the gloom
And mottoes on the wall.

There all the things are waxen neat
And set in decorous lines;
And there are posies, round and sweet,
And little, straightened vines.

Her mind lives tidily, apart
From cold and noise and pain,
And bolts the door against her heart,
Out wailing in the rain.

Dorothy Parker

How about that?

Alden said...

Delwyn - thanks for those thoughts, your image is a good one indeed.

Alden said...

Janice - I like the poem. We are all a bit like that aren't we, there is a saying by some writer - forget who, who states: "Most men live lives of quiet desperation" - which is true I think not just of men but of all humanity when we don't own up to, or express who we really are, or what we really want.

There are two books of accessible poetry on the market at the moment that I have enjoyed a lot. Both the books are collections of poetry.

"Good Poems" selected and introduced by Garrison Keillor and:

"Good Poems for Hard Times" - selected and introduced by Garrison Keillor

You might like to take a look at them - they were recommended by our mutual friend Kelvin.