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I ask for Silence (Pido Silencia)

Now if you’d leave me in peace.

Now if you’d get on without me.


I am going to close my eyes


And I only want five things,

five favorite roots.


One is love without end.


Second is to see autumn.

I cannot be without leaves

flying and returning to earth.


Third is grave winter,

the rain I loved, the caress

of a fire in a wilderness of cold.


In fourth place is summer

round like a watermelon.


The fifth thing is your eyes,

Matilde, my love, my beloved,

I would not sleep without your eyes,

I don’t want to be without your seeing me:

I’d trade springtime

for your gaze still upon me.


My friends, all of that is what I want.

Nearly nothing and nearly everything.


And now if you wish you may go.


So much have I lived that one day

you’ll have to will yourselves to forget me,

erasing the blackboard of me:

my heart was endless.


But just because I ask for silence

don’t go thinking I’m about to die:

it’s quite the contrary:

as it turns out I’m going to be lived.


It just so happens that I am and I keep being.


I will not be dying for within me

grains will grow,

first the kernels that break through

the earth to see light,

but mother earth is dark:

and inside me I am dark:

I am like a well in whose waters

the night sky leaves her stars

and goes on alone through the fields.


This is about my having lived so much

that I want to live another much.


Never have I felt such resonance,

never have I had so many kisses.


Now, as always, it is early.

The light takes flight with her bees.


Leave me alone with this day.

I raise my hand to be born.


poem by Pablo Neruda


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Taken on August 17, 2009