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Neruda’s “Poetry” In Translation

Pablo Neruda


And it was at that age … Poetry arrived
in search of me. I don’t know, don’t know where
it came from – winter, a river.
Don’t know how or when,
no, not voices, not
words, or silence,
but from a street it called me,
from the branches of night,
suddenly among others,
among violent fires
or going home alone,
there I was without a face
and it touched me.

– Pablo Neruda

From the poem, “Poetry” [Poesía] originally published in Pablo Neruda’s 1964 collection, Memorial de Isla Negra.

Translation © Rhea Tregebov


Y fue a esa edad… Llegó la poesía
a buscarme. No sé, no sé de dónde
salió, de invierno o río.
No sé cómo ni cuándo,
no, no eran voces, no eran
palabras, ni silencio,
pero desde una calle me llamaba,
desde las ramas de la noche,
de pronto entre los otros,
entre fuegos violentos
o regresando solo,
allí estaba sin rostro
y me tocaba.

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