poet Pablo Neruda

Pablo Neruda

#5 on top 500 poets

Xvii (I Do Not Love You...)

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.


Translated by Stephen Tapscott

Anonymous Submission

Poem Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

Add this poem to MyPoemList
4,3 out of 5
238 total ratings
rate this poem

Comments about Xvii (I Do Not Love You...) by Pablo Neruda

  • Disha (9/8/2020 9:43:00 PM)

    can there be any poem on earth better than this? it has one of the most beautiful expressions....

    Report Reply
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • RichCout (3/4/2019 6:25:00 AM)

    @Keegan: Hey Patch! RIP " RW"

    Report Reply
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Keegan (1/10/2019 10:28:00 PM)

    One of my all-time favorites.

    On a side note, who is here from Patch Adams?

    Report Reply
    5 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ninja9 (7/12/2018 5:07:00 AM)

    I love you like certain dark things are to be loved. In secret, between shadow and the soul
    Such beauty! It expresses all the desires one could have in just a single line.

    Report Reply
    3 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Susan WilliamsSusan Williams (11/17/2015 12:29:00 AM)

    Argh! Why wake me up to passion's call and not be here? I doth protest! Need I say this is all things beautiful and sensual and passionate and longing?

    Report Reply
    26 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Ntsakisi Malabie (9/7/2013 6:19:00 AM)

    Beautiful.....! Beautiful......Beautiful.......I love you because I know no other way.....that is love right there....love has no reason....it loves because it loves!

    Report Reply
    29 person liked.
    7 person did not like.
  • Macharia KanyariMacharia Kanyari (10/6/2012 1:03:00 PM)

    Pablo Neruda is the MAN! ! !

    Report Reply
    17 person liked.
    14 person did not like.
  • Anna Sealy (11/25/2009 7:39:00 AM)

    I love this poem...This is exactly how i feel about the man i've love almost my entire life.It's nice to know that i'm not alone in this.Thank you pablo.

    Report Reply
    30 person liked.
    9 person did not like.
  • Vanessa Goc-ong (10/17/2009 10:56:00 AM)

    I really love this poem. Love, like life, cannot be fully defined, but Pablo Neruda quite captured it in this poem. Even placed this poem in my wedding invitation.

    Report Reply
    23 person liked.
    7 person did not like.
  • RR Romac (4/8/2008 11:07:00 PM)

    I heard this poem first on a televisoin show being read at a funeral. It was so beautiful I searched for it online knowing only a few of the lines... 'I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride'...

    Report Reply
    23 person liked.
    10 person did not like.
  • Tapas Dutta (4/27/2007 7:36:00 AM)

    so true! 'I love you because I know no other way'

    Report Reply
    19 person liked.
    8 person did not like.
  • John Tiong ChunghooJohn Tiong Chunghoo (7/4/2006 6:13:00 AM)

    good one again pablo. i love.

    Report Reply
    15 person liked.
    8 person did not like.
  • Gabriel Vanmason (2/21/2005 1:59:00 AM)

    Truly, one of the most beautiful poems ever written. This poem encompasses the meaning of true love, and what love should be!

    Report Reply
    14 person liked.
    13 person did not like.
  • Danny Goh (2/13/2005 7:50:00 AM)

    Beautifully written.

    Report Reply
    18 person liked.
    10 person did not like.



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

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