Best Poems From
A New Friend
Tell me something less significant,
Something about our biology, for instance,
About what you hear while sitting under the tree,
About lonely lions in the prairies;
Forget decorated generals;
Tell me about Private Ryan,
Tell me something only you know
And make a new friend.
Dancing of Sounds
There is a moonlight note
In the Moonlight Sonata;
There is a thunder note
In an angry sky.
Sound unbound by nature
Becomes bounded by art.
There is no competition of sounds
Between a nightingale and a violin.
Nature rewards and punishes
By offering unpredictable ways;
Art is apotheosis;
Often, the complaint of beauty.
Nature is an outcry,
The art—a euphemism—
We dream and fight
With demons real and imagined;
We only live if we dream;
We grow from our dreams,
From our own La Mancha.
Don Quixote is not an imaginary person;
He is as real as Alexander the Great;
His Dulcineaas real as Cleopatra,
His windmills are as real as the Library of Alexandria,
As real as scores of languages dead and forgotten,
As real as Attila, or lost Constantinople.
His windmills are lost Ayah Sofias;
His battles had to be won
By sleepy emperors
Too busy to wage them.
We need Don Quixote and La Mancha.
When the whole past is but a phantom,
When many a city fell,
The idea remained
Stronger than any city, stronger than any empire.
Quixote shines from Lorca and Picasso,
From Dali and El Greco,
From the gloomy View of Toledo.
He was born before Cervantes.
Those in Argentina, Mexico and Peru,
Colombia and the Caribbean
Bear La Mancha and Quixote in their hearts
For he is an ultimate and overlooked Don Juan.
Marquez was not born in Colombia.
He was born in Macondo,
And his Macondo is his La Mancha.
Fuentes and Cortazar are from La Mancha too.
Neruda had his first dream,
First meeting with the Moon and the Sun
In sunny La Mancha, hiding in his heart
Where he learned how to sing like a nightingale.
Don Quixote is not just Don Quixote;
La Mancha is not just geography;
It is our personal territory
It is not important what happens where;
Where we fall or rise,
What we conquer or lose,
How big or small we are.
All places come and go.
History will be erased in the universal purgatory.
Dreams are our only geography
Our native land.
Dream within the Dream in the Dream of Edgar Allan Poe
In the dream, Homer, Lucretius, Virgil, Ovid, Dante, Shakespeare, Edgar Allan Poe, and Robert Frost meditate in the Kingdom by the sea and want to know if they found Eldorado.
Shall I compare you to the summer's night
My beautiful Anabel Lee?
Shall I take the Road less traveled
In search of Eldorado?
Or shall I compare you to the summer's day
When I seek Eldorado?
Shall I take every road
In search of my Anabel Lee
In this kingdom by the sea?
Shall I find Eldorado in my beautiful Anabel Lee?
Or shall I stop in the middle of the Forest,
In the middle of my journey,
And weep because of Senza Luna
In the Jungle and in my heart?
For I had lost the path that does not stray
'Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita
Mi ritrovai per una selva oscura
Che la dirrita via era smarrita.'
Or shall I remember that
'My soul sang of metamorphoses?
before the sea and lands began to be,
before the sky had mantled every thing,
then all of nature's face was featureless—
what men call chaos: undigested mass
of crude, confused, and scumbled elements,
a heap of seeds that clashed, of things mismatched.
There was no Titan Sun to light the world,
No crescent Moon.'
Shall I dwell in this dark forest?
Or shall I seek the kingdom by the sea to see
'When young Dawn with her rose-red fingers shone once more'?
'The true Mother of Romans, joy of gods and men, was born,
the first true woman, Venus, life giver, who under planet and star
visits the ship-clad sea, the grain-clothed land
always. For through you all that's born and breathes
is gotten, created, brought forth to see the sun,
Lady, the storms and clouds of heaven shun you,
You and your advent. Earth sweet magic-maker,
Sends up her flowers for you, broad Ocean smiles,
And peace glows in the light that fills the sky.'