(04 October 1943 / Germany)

Xvii (I Do Not Love You...)

I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz,
or the arrow of carnations the fire shoots off.
I love you as certain dark things are to be loved,
in secret, between the shadow and the soul.

I love you as the plant that never blooms
but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers;
thanks to your love a certain solid fragrance,
risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body.

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.
I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride;
so I love you because I know no other way

than this: where I does not exist, nor you,
so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,
so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.

Translated by Stephen Tapscott

Anonymous Submission

User Rating: 4,3 / 5 ( 238 votes ) 5

Comments (5)

Raynette when I read some of your poems I want to come over and wash your feet (no I am not a great bible scholar) . And when I see a comment on my poems written by you it makes my day, week and more. And Mahnaz, who really must be one of my very favourites (I know I am insatiable) , it is so nice to see you here every day. Would greatly miss you if you took a vacation. H
Beautiful...It was so touching. My heart skipped a beat....I enjoyed it. :)
This is simply beautiful and touching (or was the touching beautiful?) . At any rate, Uriah is right. This poem does have it all. I loved every word. Raynette
Thanks Uriah, you are a scholar after my own heart. Best wishes h
Wow, this poem has everything, classical music, wine, Johnny Carson, massaged feminine ankle, and interesting surprise ending and the sad truth that we can't have everything.