100 Love Sonnets : Pablo Neruda : Sonnet 18

XVIII

Through mountains you move as moves the breeze
or as the sudden stream from under snow
or your hair flaring, yes, flickering,
the high banners of an enraptured sun.

All the light of the Caucasus falls over your body
whirling like liquid in a bowl
in which the water changes shape and song
as with the river’s every open move.

Through the mountain flows the old warrior’s road
and below –shining fiercely like a sword–
the water, between the walls of the valley’s hands

until you receive from the forests, suddenly,
the branch of lightning, stroke of blue flowers,
the precious arrow of the forest’s smell.

by Pablo Neruda
tr by Bethany Wilkins and Remy Wilkins

[Click here for the original version and another translation]

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