I keep writing about motherhood and this feeling of love that shocks me and supplicates me and makes me vibrate and feel alive and feel a little overwhelmed and sometimes crushed and then I read things like the following poem and feel such tenderness for our desire to share words. I read it and wonder if there’s anything, really, left for me to say.
los nacimientos (births)
we will never have any memory of dying.
we were so patient
about our being,
years and months,
hair, and the mouths we kiss,
and that moment of dying
we let pass without a note –
we leave it to others as memory,
or we leave it simply to water,
to water, to air, to time.
nor do we even keep
the memory of being born,
although to come into being was tumultuous and new;
and now you don’t remember a single detail
and haven’t kept even a trace
of your first light.
it’s well known that we are born.
it’s well known that in the room
or in the wood
or in the shelter in the fishermen’s quarter
or in the rustling canefields
there is a quite unusual silence,
a grave and wooden moment as
a woman prepares to give birth.
it’s well known that we were all born.
but if that abrupt translation
from not being to existing, to having hands,
to seeing, to having eyes,
to eating and weeping and overflowing
and loving and loving and suffering and suffering,
of that transition, that quivering
of an electric presence, raising up
one body more, like a living cup,
and of that woman left empty,
the mother who is left there in her blood
and her lacerated fullness,
and its end and its beginning, and disorder
tumbling the pulse, the floor, the covers
till everything comes together and adds
one knot more to the thread of life,
nothing, nothing remains in your memory
of the savage sea which summoned up a wave
and plucked a shrouded apple from the tree.
the only thing you remember is your life.
2 thoughts on “I keep reading”
So, I found your blog through a comment on YHL and I was quickly drawn in. Anyone with an appreciation for Pablo Neruda is incredibly interesting and worth knowing, in my book. I love this poem almost as much as “I do not love you” (XVII).
Great post, beautiful family, and wonderful words!
Thank you Maria, I agree totally!