Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Poetic vs. Pathetic

It is April, people. April. And you know what that means...(cue crickets chirping)...

National Poetry Month! Yes, isn't it grand for the pathetic souls such as myself--those that delight in stanzas and sonnets. And I seriously dig A MONTH-LONG celebration of all things poetic.

The Diet starves January. February is in honor Black History Month (and great President's Day sales). The Irish are dyeing March green. But April...April is for poetry. And I, slacker that I am, haven't posted a poem in a while--an unforgivable error.

In honor of the festivities, check out this hot spot for your daily poetry fix...or simply to dabble in the epics and ballads. And don't forget: April 17th (next Thursday) is Poem In Your Pocket Day. The day that you...well, imagine this: you carry a poem around in your pocket. All day. And share it with friends and family and strangers in need of a good poem, of course.

In order to kick National Poetry Month of right, I'm going Chilean. Yes, every poetry reader needs some Pablo Neruda. If ever I were to pluck a Latin Lover from the field, Pablo Neruda would be my perfect wildflower (does that damper his machismo a bit?). He is my poetic soul mate. Enjoy the translation.

Tonight I Can Write
by Pablo Neruda

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.

Write, for example, "The night is starry
and the stars are blue and shiver in the distance."

The night wind revolves in the sky and sings.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.

Through nights like this one I held her in my arms.
I kissed her again and again under the endless sky.

She loved me, sometimes I loved her too.
How could one not have loved her great still eyes.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
To think that I do not have her. To feel that I have lost her.

To hear the immense night, still more immense without her.
And the verse falls to the soul like dew to the pasture.

What does it matter that my love could not keep her.
The night is starry and she is not with me.

This is all. In the distance someone is singing. In the distance.
My soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

My sight tries to find her as though to bring her closer.
My heart looks for her, and she is not with me.

The same night whitening the same trees.
We, of that time, are no longer the same.

I no longer love her, that's certain, but how I loved her.
My voice tried to find the wind to touch her hearing.

Another's. She will be another's. As she was before my kisses.
Her voice, her bright body. Her infinite eyes.

I no longer love her, that's certain, but maybe I love her.
Love is so short, forgetting is so long.

Because through nights like this one I held her in my arms
my soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

Though this be the last pain that she makes me suffer
and these the last verses that I write for her.


Alice said...

Yay for Poetry Month. April is also Sexual Assault Awareness month. I am afraid however, there are plenty of crickets to be heard in light of that subject too. You know that whole attitude of if we don't talk about it, maybe it won't exist? Ha! Like any good Social Worker, and considering my job, I suppose I will write a post about it before the month is over. Even if I don't get any comment love for it.

Maybe if you can help me remember. I will participate in Poetry in your Pocket Day. I however, think more along the lines of Shel Silverstein when I think of poetry. I know, how embarrassing for you I am sure. My commas, spelling, and grammar make you cringe at times too. Sorry :(

Freak I can be so long winded.

Great post!

Jen said...

I love Neruda. I discovered him in Spanish class, but he's fabulous in English as well!