Featured poet: Bernardo Reyes

Dec 24, 2017 Comments Off on Featured poet: Bernardo Reyes by

Bernardo Reyes (Temuco, 1951) is a poet and essayist. He has published the books Pájaros de contrasueño [Antidream birds], Karmazul, para duendes y sirenas [Blue karma for spirits and sirens], and Carta para un hijo imaginario y otras desmemorias [Letter to an imaginary son and other amnesias]. He is Pablo Neruda’s nephew.

Letter to an imaginary son

I write you this letter
sitting in the sand
by a sea that does not exist.

When you read it,
you will feel the swell of waves
on this invented planet,
the swallows crossing the sunset
and the seagulls unafraid
of the fury of the waves.

A beautiful sun lights up the place
where I am:
a non-existent window
from which I look out at passers-by
hidden behind curtains.

From that imaginary window
I can recognize your face
among thousands.

It could be my own face
that I do not know,
lost amidst other lost faces
which meet only to disappear.

But beloved son, as you do not exist
except in my imagination,
and as I can be so distant
ever since your absence,
if you wish you can deny the blood
with which I have dreamed you.

After all, these are just words
launched into a night
that has begun to grow inside me,
but that does not exist:

even if some stars shine
as faint lights shine
on a bottle thrown into the sea
by a castaway tired now
of his loneliness.

— translated by Jessica Sequeira


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