I want to do to you what Spring does with cherry trees. ~ Neruda
I’ve been contemplating Neruda for days now. Discovering this one simple quote, above, led me to this poem of his. And I melted. Oh, my, what this poem exudes.
I posted a few lines:
Let me spread you out among yellow garlands.
A long time I have loved the sunned mother-of-pearl of your body.
on Facebook and Twitter, and what came back was rapturous delight from women. Gasps. Oohs. Aahs.
I didn’t receive pithy statements about the beauty of the lines, but rather short exclamations of feeling.
Feeling. Something wakes up in us when we experience these words.
Life is erotic. Life re-creates itself, over and over. Life is an impulse, a continual impulse to come into existence. Life is birthing itself in every moment.
“What does God do all day long? God gives birth. From all eternity God lies on a maternity bed giving birth.” Meister Eckhart
Most of the lessons we’ve internalized about ‘what Spring does to cherry trees’ isn’t about life or God or ooh and ahh. Think of a nice big fat cherry pie. What we’ve been taught to believe is like taking that cherry pie and cutting the tiniest sliver out of it, then serving it up as the whole pie. The slice is so small, it can’t even stand on its own. And it doesn’t even taste like cherry pie anymore.
Pleasure, Eros, Sensuality, Sexuality. These themes are woven into Neruda’s works, but he speaks of life, of earth, of people, of longing, of creation, of love.
And in these lines, he wraps the oh-so-humble elements of this human earthly existence in robes of divinity:
Every day you play with the light of the universe.
Subtle visitor, you arrive in the flower and the water.
You are more than this white head that I hold tightly
as a cluster of fruit, every day, between my hands.
Oh let me remember you as you were before you existed.
We are sensual beings. We live in one big erotic field. Life is pulsing through our veins. Life throbs. Life longs.
In spring, we are in the outward, pulsating part of the cycle of life. Just as in the cherry tree, we feel this pulsing, this desire, this longing to create.
It’s actually really practical, too. When your creations and actions flow from this inner impulse, they come from the intelligence that is life. They are vibrantly alive and captivatingly juicy.
This impulse is a guide to truth and integrity. It is a guide to aliveness and to joy. It is a guide to feeling all of what life offers, even those feelings we’ve pushed away for so long. It is a guide to pleasure and the land of the unknown.
I could feel this in the women who responded with alive oohs and aahs. Our power lies in our bodies, in waking up to and living in the divinity that breathes fire into each and every female cell.
Do I dare live, love and create from this place? Do you? Do we?