Keeping Quiet

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    Now we will count to twelve
    and we will all keep still.

    This one time upon the earth,
    let's not speak any language,
    let's stop for one second,
    and not move our arms so much.

    It would be a delicious moment,
    without hurry, without locomotives,
    all of us would be together
    in a sudden uneasiness.

    The fishermen in the cold sea
    would do no harm to the whales
    and the peasant gathering salt
    would look at his torn hands.

    Those who prepare green wars,
    wars of gas, wars of fire,
    victories without survivors,
    would put on clean clothing
    and would walk alongside their brothers
    in the shade, without doing a thing.

    What I want shouldn't be confused
    with final inactivity:
    life alone is what matters,
    I want nothing to do with death.

    If we weren't unanimous
    about keeping our lives so much in motion,

    if we could do nothing for once,
    perhaps a great silence would
    interrupt this sadness,
    this never understanding ourselves
    and threatening ourselves with death,
    perhaps the earth is teaching us
    when everything seems to be dead
    and then everything is alive.

    Now I will count to twelve
    and you keep quiet and I'll go.
    [Pablo Neruda | 1904-1973 ]

    Found in the touching testimony of a man with Alzheimer disease :
    survivre-alzheimer.com/8_27notes.htm
    He says :
    " Mourir un peu"
    Avec cette maladie, les portes du " bien faire " et du " bien parler " se ferment avant l'heure. Nous mourons un peu pendant que la vie continue. Mais si l'on veux bien regarder, il y a encore des fenêtres. En les ouvrant vers le monde de l' " être ", elles nous aident à regarder autrement nos soucis du moment. En voici une qui m'a fait découvrir ce beau texte qui ne me lâche plus depuis "

    1. nathalie booth 62 months ago | reply

      magnifique texte, très touchant

    2. Majorlight 49 months ago | reply

      I see your likeness in this image...
      Beautiful poem by Neruda. I had not read it before.
      Your portraits of Fernando are so very tender, careful, and touching.

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