Sonnet Xi

I crave your mouth, your voice, your hair.
Silent and starving, I prowl through the streets.
Bread does not nourish me, dawn disrupts me, all day
I hunt for the liquid measure of your steps.

I hunger for your sleek laugh,
your hands the color of a savage harvest,
hunger for the pale stones of your fingernails,
I want to eat your skin like a whole almond.

I want to eat the sunbeam flaring in your lovely body,
the sovereign nose of your arrogant face,
I want to eat the fleeting shade of your lashes,

and I pace around hungry, sniffing the twilight,
hunting for you, for your hot heart,
like a puma in the barrens of Quitratue.

by Pablo Neruda

Comments (3)

An erotic poem this one.. :) In 'Sonnet XI' Neruda details with quiet intensity the fierceness of his love and desire for his paramour.. the author wants to consume his lover. Neruda likens himself to a jungle cat on the prowl, desperate for her..
Even in translation, Neruda has a gift for capturing the intense animal aspect of the physical longing of unrequited love. His ability to capture passion and desire wedded to a spiritual connection that transcends the body and enters the realm of the soul is unique.
by far the best poem ever writen!