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Gabriela Mistral

Dusk

I feel my heart melting
in the mildness like candles:
my veins are slow oil
and not wine,
and I feel my life fleeing
hushed and gentle like the gazelle.

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Many things we need can wait. The child cannot. Now is the time his bones are formed, his mind developed. To him we cannot say tomorrow, his name is today.

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At this moment, by an undeserved stroke of fortune, I am the direct voice of the poets of my race and the indirect voice for the noble Spanish and Portuguese tongues.

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The Shining Host

In vain you try
To smother my song:
A million children
In chorus sing it
Beneath the sun!

In vain you try
To break my verse
Of affliction:
The children sing it
Under God!

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The Rose

The treasure at the heart of the rose
is your own heart's treasure.
Scatter it as the rose does:
your pain becomes hers to measure.

Scatter it in a song,
or in one great love's desire.
Do not resist the rose
lest you burn in its fire.

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Creed

I believe in my heart that when
The wounded heart sunk within the depth of God sings
It rises from the pond alive
As if new-born.

I believe in my heart that what I wring from myself
To tinge life’s canvas
With red of pallid hue, thus cloaking it
In luminous garb.

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I am Not Alone

The night, it is deserted
from the mountains to the sea.
But I, the one who rocks you,
I am not alone!

The sky, it is deserted
for the moon falls to the sea.
But I, the one who holds you,
I am not alone !

The world, it is deserted.
All flesh is sad you see.
But I, the one who hugs you,
I am not alone!

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The Sad Mother

Sleep, sleep, my beloved,
without worry, without fear,
although my soul does not sleep,
although I do not rest.

Sleep, sleep, and in the night
may your whispers be softer
than a leaf of grass,
or the silken fleece of lambs.

May my flesh slumber in you,
my worry, my trembling.
In you, may my eyes close
and my heart sleep.

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Anniversary

And we go on and on,
Neither sleeping nor awake,
Towards the meeting, unaware
That we are already there.
That the silence is perfect,
And that the flesh is gone.
The call still is not heard
Nor does the Caller reveal his face.

But perhaps this might be
Oh, my love, the gift
Of the eternal Face without gestures
And of the kingdom without form!

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Pine Forest

Let us go now into the forest.
Trees will pass by your face,
and I will stop and offer you to them,
but they cannot bend down.
The night watches over its creatures,
except for the pine trees that never change:
the old wounded springs that spring
blessed gum, eternal afternoons.
If they could, the trees would lift you
and carry you from valley to valley,
and you would pass from arm to arm,
a child running
from father to father.

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Gabriela Mistral
Gabriela Mistral