January 18, 2011

Neruda online?

Upper cemetery in morning mist
Berkeley Campanile from the Marina
Winter mist covered the hills early and burned off by afternoon.  I'd been up to the cemetery in the morning and then down to the Berkeley Marina in the afternoon.  Needed my heavy jacket with the breeze at the water, but inland it seemed as if spring were on the horizon.

The city was full of people out exploring Piedmont, Berkeley, and Rockridge on MLK Holiday.  Sidewalk cafes were a flurry of action.  Numerous activities celebrating Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. were held around the area.  Mostly, people were out enjoying themselves on such a glorious day.

Guardian Spirit by the Bay 
  While driving home, I was stopped at a light behind a car with the bumper sticker which read, "Don't wait - Meditate."  Was I to rush right home and meditate?  Or hurry to a place where I could learn to meditate?  Or did it mean that I should meditate right at that moment instead of feeling that I was doing nothing but "waiting" for the light to change?  I suppose all of those at once or whatever resonated with the reader.  It was a nice moment, and obviously an effective bumper sticker.  I couldn't read the fine print to know which enterprise had produced the message.

My poet of choice right now is Pablo Neruda.  It has been my practice for many years to select a poet and spend some time with her or him to see what I could learn and to intimately listen to their voice and music.  As I have no Neruda with me, but only books I've used while in the library of which I have not become a member, I'm headed to the bookstores in Berkeley soon to see if I can land a copy of a particular translation that I have my eye on.  Meantime, out of desperation when I wanted to find a particular poem, I found Neruda online.  Amazing to see how many people have posted notes to him in response to his online poems, saying how great they thought he was, and they wanted to meet him, encouraging him to keep writing such wonderful poems.  Who knows?  Maybe they know something we don't.  Maybe there are dimensions to the web that we haven't realized.  Maybe Neruda is still around.  Maybe he still writes.