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Of all fires
love is the only inexhaustible one.

PABLO NERUDA, O Magazine, Feb. 2007

There's a country spread out in the sky,
a credulous carpet of rainbows
and crepuscular plants:
I move toward it just a bit haggardly,
trampling a gravedigger's rubble still moist from the spade
to dream in a bedlam of vegetables.


Ah, love is a voyage with water and a star,
in drowning air and squalls of precipitate bran;
love is a war of lights in the lightning flashes,
two bodies blasted in a single burst of honey.


Death is the stone into which our oblivion hardens.


Oh each successive night that comes has something in it of an abandoned ember that is slowly burning out, and it falls swathed in ruins, surrounded by funereal objects.

PABLO NERUDA, The Night of the Soldier

Hate is like a swordfish,
working through water invisibly
and then you see it coming
with blood along its blade,
but transparency disarms it.

PABLO NERUDA, Autumn Testament

Love, how many roads to reach a kiss.

PABLO NERUDA, Love, How many Roads to Reach a Kiss

Oh love, rose made wet by mermaids and foams,
fire that dances and climbs up the invisible stairs
and awakens the blood in the tunnel of sleeplessness.

PABLO NERUDA, The Month of March Returns with its Hidden Light

I say love, and the world populates itself with doves.

PABLO NERUDA, Get Used to Seeing the Shadow Behind Me

From each crime are born bullets
that will one day seek out in you
where the heart lies.

PABLO NERUDA, "I Explain a Few Things"

My poetry was born between the hill and the river, it took its voice from the rain, and like the timber, it steeped itself in the forests.


Take bread away from me, if you wish,
take air away, but
do not take from me your laughter.

PABLO NERUDA, "Your Laughter"

Will our life not be a tunnel between two vague clarities? Or will it not be a clarity between two dark triangles?

PABLO NERUDA, The Book of Questions

Oh each successive night that comes has something in it of an abandoned ember that is slowly burning out, and it falls swathed in ruins, surrounded by funereal objects.

PABLO NERUDA, "The Night of the Soldier"

I watch my words from a long way off.
They are more yours than mine.
They climb on my old suffering like ivy.

PABLO NERUDA, "So That You Will Hear Me"

If we were not so single-minded
about keeping our lives moving
and for once could do nothing,
perhaps a huge silence
might interrupt this sadness
of never understanding ourselves
and of threatening ourselves with death
Perhaps the world can teach us
as when everything seems dead
but later proves to be alive.

PABLO NERUDA, Extravagaria

In what language does rain fall over tormented cities?

PABLO NERUDA, The Book of Questions

Everything is ceremony in the wild garden of childhood.

PABLO NERUDA, Winter Garden

And the verse falls to the soul like dew to the pasture.

PABLO NERUDA, "Tonight I Can Write"

My struggle is harsh and I come back
with eyes tired
at times from having seen
the unchanging earth,
but when your laughter enters
it rises to the sky seeking me
and it opens for me all
the doors of life.

PABLO NERUDA, "Your Laughter"

I want to do with you what spring does with the cherry trees.

PABLO NERUDA, "Every Day You Play"

Only do not forget, if I wake up crying
it's only because in my dream I'm a lost child
hunting through the leaves of the night for your hands.


Laughter is the language of the soul.

PABLO NERUDA, I Explain a Few Things

This flesh and the other will be consumed,
the flower will doubtless perish without residue,
when death--sterile dawn, desiccated dust--
comes one day into the girdle of the haughty island,
and you, statue, daughter of man, will remain
gazing with the empty eyes that rose
up through one and another hand of the absent immortals.

PABLO NERUDA, "The Builders of Statues"

Love! Love until the night collapses!

PABLO NERUDA, "Come Up with Me"

On our earth, before writing was invented, before the printing press was invented, poetry flourished. That is why we know that poetry is like bread; it should be shared by all, by scholars and by peasants, by all our vast, incredible, extraordinary family of humanity.

PABLO NERUDA, The Essential Neruda


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