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Saturday, October 22, 2005

Die Slowly: Poem by Pablo Neruda

Neruda is one of my favorite poets and especially I love his romantic poems. This poem in English translation that Google recently published is very different. In many respects, it's a personal change poem that reminds us how we decide to "die slowly" because we have become slaves of certain attitudes and habits. Read, enjoy and reflect!

He who becomes the slave of habit,
who follows the same routes every day,
who never changes pace,
who does not risk and change the color of his clothes,
who does not speak and does not experience, dies slowly.

He or she who shuns passion,
who prefers black on white,
dotting ones “is” rather than a bundle of emotions,
the kind that make your eyes glimmer,
that turn a yawn into a smile,
that make the heart pound in the face of mistakes and feelings, dies slowly.

He or she who does not turn things topsy-turvy,
who is unhappy at work,
who does not risk certainty for uncertainty,
to thus follow a dream,
those who do not forego sound advice at least once in their lives, die slowly.

He who does not travel,
who does not read,
who does not listen to music,
who does not find grace in himself, dies slowly.

He who slowly destroys his own self-esteem,
who does not allow himself to be helped,
who spends days on end complaining about his own bad luck,
about the rain that never stops, dies slowly.

He or she who abandon a project before starting it,
who fail to ask questions on subjects he doesn’t know,
he or she who don’t reply when they are asked something they do know, die slowly.

Let’s try and avoid death in small doses,
always reminding oneself that being alive requires an effort by far
greater than the simple fact of breathing.
Only a burning patience will lead to the attainment of a splendid happiness

6 Comments:

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Appréciate your site, liked your translation of Dies Slowly, one of my favorite like the 'Psalm of Life' by H W Longfellow.Mushtaq

1:01 PM  
Blogger babusyed said...

for more on neruda pls visit http://www.geocities.com/psbabusyed/neruda.html

10:22 PM  
Blogger Vicente said...

This poem is a HOAX.
Was not written by Neruda. If he's one of your favorite poets, you should know.
http://jorgeletralia.blogsome.com/2009/01/15/neruda-tambien-tiene-su-poemita-inspiracional/
It's just a piece of "inspirational" bullcrap written for idiots to reproduce and chain, "just because it's Neruda".
Tough luck... Poser.

9:57 AM  
Anonymous Clara said...

This poem was written by Martha Medeiros, a Brazilian writer, not by Pablo Neruda. If you really liked Pablo Neruda, you should know this poem is not his.

2:50 PM  

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