Passages: Pablo Neruda

Here is your early Valentines Day poem, courtesy of Pablo Neruda and his book Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair:

In my sky at twilight you are like a cloud

and your form and color are the way I love them.

You are mine, mine, woman with sweet lips

and in your life my infinite dreams live.

The lamp of my soul dyes your feet,

my sour wine is sweeter on your lips,

oh reaper of my evening song,

how solitary dreams believe you to be mine!

You are mine, mine, I go shouting it to the afternoon’s

wind, and the wind hauls on my widowed voice.

Huntress of the depths of my eyes, your plunder

stills your nocturnal regard as through it were water.

You are taken in the net of my music, my love,

and my nets of music are wide as the sky.

My soul is born on the shore of your eyes of mourning.

In your eyes of mourning the land of dreams begins.

We should just rename Valentines Day as Neruda Day and be done with it. Nobody writes love poetry like the Chilean maestro. He is the bard of what comes after the first night together, when the doors are all being opened and the wonders of the two of you are ready to be explored. It’s the kind of love that can burn out quickly or, if you are lucky, reduce to a long simmer that lasts for years, flaring up at unexpected and delightful times.

This is from a poem in The Captain’s Verses:

Lovely one,

with a nest of copper entangled

on your head, a nest

the color of dark honey

where my heart burns and rests,

lovely one.

Lovely one,

your eyes are too big for your face,

your eyes are too big for the earth.

There are countries, there are rivers,

in your eyes,

my country is in your eyes,

I walk through them,

they light the world

through which I walk,

lovely one.

There are writers whose works can make you feel smarter, sexier, funnier, stronger, better, more loveable and more worthy of love. Neruda is one of them. You should have at least one of his books and know at least some of his poems by heart. If you don’t, these two books are great places to begin.

2 thoughts on “Passages: Pablo Neruda

  1. Gina says:

    I agree, Neruda makes you feel many things, including the truth to love with all its warped sensiblities, lust, and selfishness.

  2. Anthony says:

    Neruda is a wonderful poet. These are some truly amazing poems. I have a friend, Mark who’s working on a Pablo project for Red Poppy. Check it out at

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