Saturday, January 24, 2009

One of my top 10 favorite poems, for sure....

I just found this again and am reminded of how much I love reading Pablo Neruda. Listen to this for another one of his best. Don't forget to read poems aloud, straight through, even if you stumble, to get the meaning and rhythm (or listen to them being read). Reading poems aloud can convert you into a poetry lover:)

We Are Many by Pablo Neruda

Of so many men that I am, that we are,
I can’t find a single one:
I lose them under my clothing,
they’ve moved to another town.

When everything seems to be set
to show off my erudition,
the fool I always keep hidden
takes over all that I say.

I am paralyzed and silenced
among those who are distinguished
but when I seek the fearless within me
a coward I do not know
rushes to cover my skeleton
with a thousand fine precautions.

When a home I care for burns
I call forth the firelighter
but the arsonist breaks through
and he is I. There is no fixing me.
What must I do to select me?
How can become myself?

All the books I read
celebrate dazzling heroes
always certain of themselves:
how I envy them.
In cowboy films
I am jealous of the cowboy,
and even admire the horse.

But when I seek the daredevil
I find the lazy old man,
and so I do not know who I am,
or how many I am or we are.
I would like to ring a bell
and summon the real me
because if I need myself
I should not be disappearing.

While I write I am absent
and when I return I’ve gone:
One day I will see if these things
also happen to other people,
if they are as many as I am,
if they resemble themselves,
and when I find out
I will know all things so well
that to explain all my problems
I will speak about geography.

translated by F. Pajares


Samantha said...

Wow, that's true to my experience!

I hope you had fun camping, and will look forward to seeing you again soon...

Shannon said...

Okay, next trip to HPB I'm going to finally get that poetry anthology I've been almost buying for a year now!