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

by Pablo Neruda

Comments (11)

I love you like certain dark things are to be loved. In secret, between shadow and the soul Such beauty! It expresses all the desires one could have in just a single line.
Argh! Why wake me up to passion's call and not be here? I doth protest! Need I say this is all things beautiful and sensual and passionate and longing?
Beautiful.....! Beautiful......Beautiful.......I love you because I know no other way.....that is love right there....love has no reason....it loves because it loves!
Pablo Neruda is the MAN! ! !
I love this poem...This is exactly how i feel about the man i've love almost my entire life.It's nice to know that i'm not alone in this.Thank you pablo.
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