From One Hundred Love Sonnets

Sonnet 55


Pablo Neruda

Thorns, broken glass, sickness, weeping

attack the honeyed happiness day and night.

And neither the tower, nor the journey, nor the walls do any good:

trouble pierces the sleepers' peace.

Sorrow rises and falls and comes near with its spoons

and no person can live without this movement,

there is no birth, there is no roof nor fence:

we have to take this thing into account.

And eyes shut tight in love don't help either,

nor soft beds far from the pestilent wounded,

or from the one who advances pace by pace with his flag.

Because life beats like a bile or river

and opens a bloody tunnel through which we stare into

the eyes of an immense family of sorrow.


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