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Friday, April 28, 2017

Ode To Common Things - by Pablo Neruda


I have a crazy,
crazy love of things.

I like pliers,

and scissors.
I love cups,
rings,
and bowls
-not to speak,
of course,
of hats.
I love all things,
not just the grandest,
also the infinite-ly
small -thimbles,
spurs,
plates,
and flower vases.
Oh yes,
the planet is sublime!
It’s full of pipes
weaving hand-held
through tobacco smoke,
and keys and salt shakers -everything,
I mean,
that is made
by the hand of man,
every little thing:
shapely shoes,
and fabric,
and each new
bloodless birth
of gold,
eye glasses
carpenter’s nails,
brushes,
clocks, compasses,
coins,
and the so-soft
softness of chairs.
Mankind has built
oh so many
perfect
things!
Built them of wool and of wood,
of glass and
of rope:
remarkable tables,
ships,
and stairways.
I love all things,
not because they are
passionate
or sweet-smelling
but because,
I don’t know,
because
this ocean is yours,
and mine;
these buttons
and wheels
and little
forgotten
treasures,
fans upon
whose feathers
love has scattered
its blossoms
glasses, knives and
scissors -all bear
the trace
of someone’s fingers
on their handle or surface,
the trace of a distant hand
lost
in the depths of forgetfulness.
I pause in houses,
streets and
elevators
touching things,
identifying objects
that I secretly covet;
this one because it rings,
that one because
it’s as soft
as the softness of a woman’s hip,
that one there for its deep-sea color,
and that one for its velvet feel.
O irrevocable
river
of things:
no one can say
that I loved
only
fish,
or the plants
of the jungle
and the field,
that I loved
only
those things
that leap
and climb,
desire,
and survive.
It’s not true:
many things conspired
to tell me the whole story.
Not only did they touch me,
or my hand touched them:
they were so close
that they were a part
of my being,
they were so alive with me
that they lived half my life
and will die half my death.

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