Blogger – Paul Harper : Ode to Neruda

Neftali Reyes changes his name to Pablo Neruda & becomes , to this day , perhaps the most widely read poet on the planet. His life was far too long , rich & complex to properly paraphrase , so here’s a link: : knock yourselves out .

And here’s a link to a poem from his time in Spain as a diplomat during the Civil War of 1936-39.

It’s all there in a poem such as this : the politics , the passion , the insistance on the material stuff of real life . And insistance that would later materialise in the poems of his three books of Elemental Odes . Hymns to spuds , tomatos , flowers , the smell of timber on a rainy night . Slender poems tumbling down the page like rain .

I’d been reading poetry for years , but this was the stuff that really made me fall in love with it .


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