Updated: 2 days ago
Craig Santos Perez is one of the best poets writing environmentally-aware poetry these days. His poem posted on my blog today, "Love in a Time of Climate Change," is such a clever embrace of the personal and political. His poem also takes its form from a Pablo Neruda sonnet, as he notes, and that poem is below.
Love Sonnet XVII
by Pablo Neruda
I do not love you as if you were a 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.
Your prompt for today has a few suggestions; take one or more for your draft.
1.) Use a form for your poem by a famous poet. (For the title of this prompt, I used Robert Burns' "My Love Is Like a Red, Red Rose.")
2.) Don't just use the physical form, but also repeat key phrases.
3.) Have your speaker "say" the poem as a direct address.
4.) Make it about love.
5.) Use a pressing contemporary issue in your poem. It can be an event the speaker references, a metaphor used throughout the poem, part of the setting, or something else.
As always, cite your source (the poem you used and the poet who wrote it) and have fun!