Pablo Neruda's second book (Crepusculario was the first), and probably his best known one. It was published in June of 1924 by Editorial Nascimiento, in Santiago de Chile when he was merely 20 years old. In his memoirs Confieso que he vivido (Editorial Seix Barral, Barcelona, 1974), he had nostalgic and serene words about these poems:

"Twently love poems and a song of despair is a painful and pastoral book that encompasses my most tormentful adolescent passions, mixed with the sweeping nature of the south of my homeland. It is a book that I love because in spite of its acute melancholy, the joy of existing is present in it. A river helped me write it: the Río Imperial. The "Twenty Poems" are the romance of Santiago, with the student-filled streets, the University, and the honeysuckle scent of shared love."

What more can be said?

The poems are not titled, only numbered, but they are often known by their first verse.

  • Cuerpo de mujer, blancas colinas, muslos blancos (Body of woman, hills of white, white thighs)
  • En su llama mortal la luz te envuelve (Light enfolds you in its mortal flame)
  • Ah, vastedad de pinos (Ah, vastness of pines)
  • Es la mañana llena de tempestad (It's the morning full of storm)
  • Para que tu me oigas (So that you can hear me)
  • Te recuerdo como eras en el último otoño (I remember you how you were last autumn)
  • Inclinado en las tardes (Hunched over in the afternoons)
  • Abeja blanca zumbas (White bee you buzz)
  • Ebrio de trementina y largos besos (Drunk on turpentine and long kisses)
  • Hemos perdido aún este crepúsculo (We have lost even this dusk)
  • Casi fuera del cielo (Almost out of the sky)
  • Para mi corazón basta tu pecho (For my heart your bossom is enough)
  • He ido marcando con cruces de fuego (I have been marking with croses of fire)
  • Juegas todos los dias (Every day you play)
  • Me gustas cuando callas (I like for you to be still)
  • En mi cielo al crepúsculo (In my sky at twilight)
  • Pensando, enredando sombras en la profunda soledad (Thinking, tangling shadows in the profound solitude)
  • Aquí te amo (I love you here)
  • Niña morena y ágil (Swarthy and nimble girl)
  • Puedo escribir los versos más tristes esta noche (Tonight I can write the saddest lines)
  • La cancion desesperada (The song of despair)

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