Two poems based on Pablo Neruda’s Book of Questions

We began the workshop today with an exploration of Neruda’s Book of Questions. Together, we read some select poems with a closing poem, in English and the original Spanish. After this discussion of the poems, particularly those we loved, we wrote. For 35 minutes, we wrote. There are two poems that I love, that I’m going to craft more with the hope of publishing it somewhere, but I’ll share two ruminations.

Tell me, is the green eye
afraid of the coming frost?

Why does the unwilling tear
crouch about in dark corners?

Does it whisper in the hush of a child
saying her first prayers?

Is there anything as blue
as its trail on a dry bed of skin?

And what of the flame, does it envy
the dancer’s leap through bitter air?

Why does she twist so happily
when levees break with a wisp?

Have you noticed her thigh swells
haughty like the drowned man’s wave?

Whom can I ask how a swallow of sweat
intoxicates into pacified stillness?


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