REK (02/10/1985 / Beirut)

Unsolved Query

So long, since the beginning of time,
Since the discovery of the first rhyme,
Poets always wrote about their woes
Proclaiming them as their razing foes.
With ruinous, they qualified their anguish
Oh, how unapprised and how foolish!
Did they, by neglect or with bad intention,
Disregard the other side of the question?

How could they forget that their hunting grief
Was the source of their fructuous relief,
That their books and poems were the result
Of the wound they used to ungratefully insult,
That their unforgettable words and verses
Came from nowhere but what they called their curses?
Or did they ignore that sorrow was the pen
That narrated the poems adored by all men,
And all that made their compelling celebrity
Were the ache's jewels, abhorred with ferocity?
Or did they purposely overlook every hurricane
Emerged with their mounting tears and pain,
And forget that the steaming fury eating their heart
Was cultivating ideas, not driving them apart?

Oh! What outrageous felony and blasphemy
For a poet to consider soreness as an enemy!
Throbbing torture is for the sincere writer
Like the courage for the invincible fighter,
Like the letters for a meaningful word,
The land for the tree, the melody for the bird
The rain for the cloud, the sun for the flower
The water for the sea, the all-mighty power...

Why did they never talk about their joy?
They were not very modest neither coy.
They didn't shut up their glee by chance,
However this wasn't some kind of offense
They, simply, would never find the line
To describe the euphoria of feeling fine.
Only fierce grief could revive the genie,
Simple hazard or derision of the destiny?

They were able to laugh for an hour or ten
Without ever needing to search for a pen,
But after just one second of suffering
They wrote pages and pages, everlasting!
These words will turn them into immortal
Despise an end that could be very fatal.

What is the secret that makes words flow
Just when you relinquish to your sorrow?
This matter will remain with no answer
For every lyricist, it is a ravaging cancer.

Through the gloom of November
Glittered two irresistible faces,
Describing them would be so hard.
My misery with delight embraces
Instantly turning me into a bard
This, I shall always remember.

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Pablo Neruda

If You Forget Me

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