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      POEM 20

I can write the saddest lines tonight.

Write for example: «The night is fractured
and they shiver, blue, those stars, in the distance».

The night wind turns in the sky and sings.

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

On nights like these I held her in my arms.
I kissed her greatly under the infinite sky.

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

I can write the saddest lines tonight.
To think I don’t have her, to feel I have lost her.

Hear the vast night, vaster without her.
Lines fall on the soul like dew on the grass.

What does it matter that I couldn’t keep her.
The night is fractured and she is not with me.

That is all. Someone sings far off. Far off,
my soul is not content to have lost her.

As though to reach her, my sight looks for her.
My heart looks for her: she is not with me

The same night whitens, in the same branches.
We, from that time, we are not the same.

I don’t love her, that’s certain, but how I loved her.
My voice tried to find the breeze to reach her.

Another’s kisses on her, like my kisses.
Her voice, her bright body, infinite eyes.

I don’t love her, that’s certain, but perhaps I love her.
Love is brief: forgetting lasts so long.

Since, on these nights, I held her in my arms,
my soul is not content to have lost her.

Though this is the last pain she will make me suffer,
and these are the last lines I will write for her.

autógrafo

Pablo Neruda, 1924
English translation by A. S. Kline


subir   poema aleatorio   Twenty Poems of Love (1924)   siguiente / next   anterior / previous
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enlace Eliana Segura Vega - PARAFRASEANDO EL POEMA VEINTE DE PABLO NERUDA
inglés English translation by W. S. Merwin (version 1) (version 2)
inglés English translation by A. S. Kline
español Original version