Pablo Neruda

(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973 / Parral / Chile)

Sonnet Xvii - Poem by Pablo Neruda

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.

Form: Sonnet

Comments about Sonnet Xvii by Pablo Neruda

  • Anita Khelawan Anita Khelawan (1/13/2016 12:08:00 PM)

    wow.... your poem is amazing.... line for line i enjoyed everyone. thnx for sharing... i am in love with your words. (Report) Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Phanice Wamukota Phanice Wamukota (7/9/2015 2:21:00 AM)

    Beautiful, lovely and funny lines as well. I can't stop smiling. (Report) Reply

  • Melvina Germain Melvina Germain (6/28/2015 12:41:00 AM)

    Love this poem but I must say, I'm sure everything Pablo Neruda writes would beget a like from me. I absolutely adore his work and this poem is another one of his golden treasures..... (Report) Reply

  • Michelle Claus Michelle Claus (4/7/2015 9:00:00 PM)

    Now that's what I call a Poem. I submit. (Report) Reply

  • John Richter (4/7/2015 7:31:00 AM)

    'to be loved, in secret, between the shadow and the soul...' Man.... what else can be said..... (Report) Reply

  • Panmelys Panmelys Panmelys Panmelys (3/28/2015 5:06:00 AM)

    There can only be praise, even a comment seems impertinent before such greatness. And as I'm lucky to hve experienced a great love, it simply speaks a language I recognize and find myself happy to know Pablo also
    was so privileged. He's one of our greatest poet's, but translations aren't always able to capture the texture.
    I quote him in one of my poems, when I ask Pablo and TSEliot what flowers belong to my poems: will they ask me where are the trees and leaves of Eliot, or geraniums that ran red with the blood in the streets, like tomatoes rolling down to the sea, of Pablo? Marvellous poem to be read over and over., with the rest. Panmelys (Report) Reply

  • Philip Rodney (12/22/2014 5:26:00 PM)

    Thank you Mr Basoalto, as you have given me my landing instructions to land on this expression after brain surgery. A beautiful fabric of your soul to land on. (Report) Reply

  • Sun Zoo (9/11/2012 5:34:00 PM)

    I love the last stanza, such a contrast to the rest of the poem (Report) Reply

  • Noel Mc Inerney (12/7/2009 7:33:00 AM)

    this is one of my favourite poems it is so sad so sincere i love the way he lists the ways he doesn't love her then says how close he feels to her (Report) Reply

  • Putul S (10/3/2009 1:19:00 AM)

    Aaaaahhh! ! Just much of emotions in such few words. (Report) Reply

  • Janine Cody (9/17/2009 2:36:00 PM)

    This is the one that we chose to have read at our wedding. I LOVE it - especially the last 2 lines and the line about the light of hidden flowers. I've been married 7 years now and looked it up while searching for a poem to help a friend's daughter with her homework. Feeling a little dreamy now. (Report) Reply

  • Noel Mc Inerney (9/11/2009 3:12:00 PM)

    i absolutly love this poem its in the movie patch ada, s so sad (Report) Reply

  • Lorraine Margueritte Gasrel Black (6/18/2009 7:14:00 PM)

    Absolutely beautiful! ! ! (Report) Reply

  • Mike Z (6/4/2009 8:12:00 PM)

    This and Robert Desnos' 'J'ai tant reves de toi' (I have dreamed of you so much)

    http: //

    always remind me of each other, even though they're not much alike. I guess it's the all-consuming passion elicited by both voices...... (Report) Reply

  • Mel Vincent Basconcillo (5/2/2009 9:17:00 AM)

    truly magnificent! magnificent! (Report) Reply

  • Aria Morte (12/15/2008 10:22:00 AM)

    ...brilliant! : melts: (Report) Reply

  • Riquetta Elliott (11/20/2008 11:49:00 AM)

    I wish I could the love a try. Good poem. (Report) Reply

  • Sandra Pasion (8/10/2008 5:51:00 AM)

    makes me want to fall in love over and over again.. (Report) Reply

  • Original Unknown Girl (11/28/2007 5:37:00 AM)

    I adore this poem, it embodies all there is about deep, deep love.... and how we learn to accept it growing and living in us. Pablo has my heart when he writes like this. Fabulous! HG: -) xx (Report) Reply

  • daughter of a seafoam (9/15/2007 12:30:00 PM)

    May favorite of favorites... how sad.. yet romantic.. The love that is not tangible yet felt, beautiful.. the way he convey his love in its purest sense, full of hope, and strong...and in a unique love of his own terms, as he says 'I love you because there is no other way than this: where I does not exist, nor you, ' which binds them together. (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: thanks, pride, rose, fire, dark, light, love, sonnet, flower

Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

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