Friday 26 June 2009

Neruda, Pablo -- Personal Reflections

Neruda, the Chilean poet and political activist, has a way with expressing intimate thoughts. His poems always seem as if they splash the emotions of the inner self through the medium of words. Reading his poems can never be a continous process. The poems have to be taken in line by line and word by word. Added to that, if the reader is anything like me, a dreamer of the highest order, then every poem has something from the pages of the past to think on.

I must mention the lovely movie "Il Postino" (The Postman), the 1994 Italian film directed by Michael Radford. The film tells a story in which the real life Pablo Neruda forms a relationship with a simple postman who learns to love poetry. The film has lovely stills, music and fabulous acting by almost all of them. The film has various awards and credits to its name. A story told from the heart which touches and strikes a chord.

Finally a lovely poem of Neruda's (I had a slight difficulty in choosing a poem of Neruda's but then this one made me linger longer and thats why I chose this one):

If You Forget Me - Neruda, Pablo

I want you to know
one thing.

You know how this is:
if I look
at the crystal moon, at the red branch
of the slow autumn at my window,
if I touch
near the fire
the impalpable ash
or the wrinkled body of the log,
everything carries me to you,
as if everything that exists,
aromas, light, metals,
were little boats
that sail
toward those isles of yours that wait for me.

Well, now,
if little by little you stop loving me
I shall stop loving you little by little.

If suddenly
you forget me
do not look for me,
for I shall already have forgotten you.

If you think it long and mad,
the wind of banners
that passes through my life,
and you decide
to leave me at the shore
of the heart where I have roots,
that on that day,
at that hour,
I shall lift my arms
and my roots will set off
to seek another land.

if each day,
each hour,
you feel that you are destined for me
with implacable sweetness,
if each day a flower
climbs up to your lips to seek me,
ah my love, ah my own,
in me all that fire is repeated,
in me nothing is extinguished or forgotten,
my love feeds on your love, beloved,
and as long as you live it will be in your arms
without leaving mine.

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