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
An editorial note by Leslie Pockell postulates that the love he speaks of in this poem is what he experienced with his third wife, Matilde Urrutia. “Something passionate and profound, but also easy and natural….” What speaks to me is the reality in a solid reality, words that aren’t inflated, words that are accurate, words that create an exact image. Sure, I’m a sucker for love poems, but I especially like ones that begin “I do not love you…”
What kind of poetry speaks to you?