Sunday, October 30, 2011


I was looking for a poem about water to start my Fluid Mechanics block with my grade eight class. Look what I found by Pablo Neruda:

Everything on the earth bristled, the bramble
pricked and the green thread
nibbled away, the petal fell, falling
until the only flower was the falling itself.
Water is another matter,
has no direction but its own bright grace,
runs through all imaginable colors,
takes limpid lessons
from stone,
and in those functionings plays out
the unrealized ambitions of the foam.

The first time I heard of this poet was at a funeral. A funeral for a 33 year old man, my son's beloved violin teacher, and his fiance read this poem:

Sonnet XVII

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.

So this is what the internet can do for us. It can start out as water and turn to love. It can start out after a long day of prep, while my love, my husband, cooks a wonderful Sunday dinner. And then, I remember this poem, and think, it is time to stop prepping, time to turn off the computer, time to pick up my glass of wine, and join my love for a few hours before bed.

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