July 3, 2005

I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz,
or the arrows 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 which 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.

– Pablo Neruda, Sonnet XVII

So alone again on a Sunday night wishing that I had a gay posse to take me out clubbing so that I can find the one true love of my life: I am a morass of insensibilities and illogic. And once again the mind seeks refuge in intellect or beauty: the original joy of discovering Kant has really worn off me, so I turn to trying to decipher economics, calculus and the Rawlsian equilibrium. That fails, and all that is left is to leave my eyes open to the wonderful world of pornography. Even that climax is short-lived, so the aesthetic sense seeks out a vague memory that is still with me: that sunny morning we are told to present our favorite poems in class, and some boy or other whips out Neruda’s seventeen and blows everyone away with such a lovely, lovely reading of it.

I really wanted to crumple into an autistic ball and fetus my way out of the mad emotions that such a simple poem could evoke in complex me. Or not: maybe I’m not so complex after all, perhaps all my complexes are constructs, perhaps I am just as simple as they come. I am extraodinarily ordinary: there is nothing I want more than mad love in all its madness.


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