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WordDoctor
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Daily Neruda: Heights of Macchu Picchu Canto XII
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Today I was inspired by @alejomarin's card in the Photography community from a visit to Macchu Picchu: http://www.vingle.net/posts/576275-The-Machu-Pichu-s-ruins It is one of my bucket list items to walk the Inca Trail and visit Macchu Picchu, which is located in Peru. It is a magical, majestic place that also inspired Pablo Neruda - so much so that he devoted an entire poetry collection to expressing its power. Here is Canto XII from "The Heights of Macchu Picchu" or "Las alturas de Macchu Picchu." I also included a video of a Chilean group called Los Jaivas who wrote a song based on this Canto, then filmed a performance on Macchu Picchu. It's fun to watch - even if you don't understand Spanish! You can also hear a clip of Neruda reading portions of the poem here: http://www.poesi.as/reci0006.htm "Canto XII" By Pablo Neruda Translated by William Little Rise up in birth with me, my brother. Give me your hand out of the deep zone of your wide-spread sorrow. You will not return from the bedrock depths. You will not return from subterranean time. It will not return, your hardened voice. They will not return, your pierced eyes. Look at me from the depths of the earth, you, the farm worker, the weaver, the quiet shepherd, the tamer of guardian guanacos, the mason on his defied scaffolding, the water carrier bearing Andean tears, the jeweler with crushed fingers, the farmer trembling among his seeds, you, the potter poured in your clay, all ye, bring to the cup of this new life your ancient buried sorrows. Show me your blood and your furrow, tell me: here I was punished because the jewel did not shine or the earth failed to yield enough stone or enough corn: point to the rock on which you fell and the wood on which they crucified you; strike the old flints, turn on the old lamps, crack the whips embedded throughout the centuries in your wounds and the axes with blood-encrusted sparkle. I am coming to speak for and through your dead mouths. Throughout the earth, join together all the scattered silent lips, and out of the depths speak to me during this long night as if I were anchored to you. Tell me everything, chain by chain, link by link, and step by step. Sharpen the knives you'd locked away, put them on my breast and into my hands, like a river of yellow lightening, like a river of buried tigers, and let me cry, hours, days, years, blind ages, stellar centuries. Give me silence, water, hope. Give me the struggle, the iron, the volcanoes. Attach your bodies to me like magnets. Come to my veins and my mouth. Speak through my words and my blood. "Canto XII" By Pablo Neruda (Spanish original) [Note: I am traveling and don't have my copy of the original Spanish so I couldn't double check the spacing and line details - but hopefully this is fine! I will double check and edit if necessary when I have my copy] Sube a nacer conmigo, hermano. Dame la mano desde la profunda zona de tu dolor diseminado. No volverás del fondo de las rocas. No volverás del tiempo subterráneo. No volverá tu voz endurecida. No volverán tus ojos taladrados. Mírame desde el fondo de la tierra, labrador, tejedor, pastor callado: domador de guanacos tutelares: albañil del andamio desafiado: aguador de las lágrimas andinas: joyero de los dedos machacados: agricultor temblando en la semilla: alfarero en tu greda derramado: traed a la copa de esta nueva vida vuestros viejos dolores enterrados. Mostradme vuestra sangre y vuestro surco, decidme: aquí fui castigado, porque la joya no brilló o la tierra no entregó a tiempo la piedra o el grano: señaladme la piedra en que caísteis y la madera en que os crucificaron, encendedme los viejos pedernales, las viejas lámparas, los látigos pegados a través de los siglos en las llagas y las hachas de brillo ensangrentado. Yo vengo a hablar por vuestra boca muerta. A través de la tierra juntad todos los silenciosos labios derramados y desde el fondo habladme toda esta larga noche, como si yo estuviera con vosotros anclado, contadme todo, cadena a cadena, eslabón a eslabón, y paso a paso, afilad los cuchillos que guardasteis, ponedlos en mi pecho y en mi mano, como un río de rayos amarillos, como un río de tigres enterrados, y dejadme llorar, horas, días, años, edades ciegas, siglos estelares. Dadme el silencio, el agua, la esperanza. Dadme la lucha, el hierro, los volcanes. Apagadme los cuerpos como imanes. Acudid a mis venas y a mi boca.
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@alejomarin I'm so happy you enjoyed it! Thanks for the inspiration :) I hope I also get to visit one day!
I absolutely love the song interpretation based off this poem! Beautiful. It brings the work to life in a totally different way, giving us another "poem" to experience. Thanks for sharing @WordDoctor
I love the depth that he provides in his including of all that makes up the land: both in life, and in death!
Me, too, @timeturnerjones! I always image him standing on Macchu Picchu, and the history and spirit of it emanating out of the stones and the ground where it's been infused over all those years. I like to imagine I could also feel it if I went there and stood attentively and meditatively.
I'm so glad you enjoyed the music, @greggr! It really gives context, I think - poetry is definitely universal, but it can also transport you into other cultures and experiences.