gershon hepner

Rookie - 10 Points (5 3 38 / leipzig)

If Gradually You Should Forget - Poem by gershon hepner


If gradually you should forget
not only what I’ve written but
what I have been to you then let
my open book be left unshut,
and store it somewhere where you may
discover it in distant time
when thoughts of me have flown away,
concealed proleptically in rhyme
that I’ve prepared to bring you back
in poetry unmisbegotten,
and make you leave the cul-de-sac
where thoughts of me have been forgotten.
Come seek me in the words’ aroma
and in the verses’ silent sound
of music you may hear, beachcomber
whom the sands of time have found.
If gradually you should forget
as poor Ophelia should have done
my rhymes when to your rhythm set
will transform two of us to one.

Inspired by a poem by Pablo Neruda, “If You Forget Me”.

If You Forget Me
I want you to know
one thing.

You know how this is:
if I look
at the crystal moon, at the red branch
of the slow autumn at my window,
if I touch
near the fire
the impalpable ash
or the wrinkled body of the log,
everything carries me to you,
as if everything that exists,
aromas, light, metals,
were little boats
that sail
toward those isles of yours that wait for me.

Well, now,
if little by little you stop loving me
I shall stop loving you little by little.

If suddenly
you forget me
do not look for me,
for I shall already have forgotten you.

If you think it long and mad,
the wind of banners
that passes through my life,
and you decide
to leave me at the shore
of the heart where I have roots,
that on that day,
at that hour,
I shall lift my arms
and my roots will set off
to seek another land.

if each day,
each hour,
you feel that you are destined for me
with implacable sweetness,
if each day a flower
climbs up to your lips to seek me,
ah my love, ah my own,
in me all that fire is repeated,
in me nothing is extinguished or forgotten,
my love feeds on your love, beloved,
and as long as you live it will be in your arms
without leaving mine.


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Poem Submitted: Monday, January 25, 2010

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