In Mexico, "cielo" (lit. "sky") is a common term of endearment for your significant other, and it's used both for males and females. Indeed, someone might call their spouse "mi cielo", as some sort of poetic shorthand of "you, the sky above my head" or some variation of it. Although I'm not an anthropologist, linguist or psychologist, I have observed that this term is often used as an implication of the omnipresence of that other person in one's life. This sentiment is expressed in a slightly different way on Oscar Hernández's poem "Si no fuera por ti":

Si no fuera por tí, ¿a quién diría
que sigues habitando en mí como la luz habita el día?

If it weren't for you, who would I tell
that you inhabit my self as light inhabits the day?

It's also true that this term is often used the way English speakers might use "honey" and "dear": in a rather casual and loving way, a flexible term that you might use for daily communications and perhaps sometimes in more intimate occasions.

However, every powerful object needs some warnings and words are very powerful things, even in the hands (mouth) of someone who doesn't know how to use them properly. Words can hurt in ways that sticks and stones cannot. You must heed this advice if you are to use even such simple words as "mi cielo".

Heed my words and learn from my experience:

  • Warning #1: When someone calls you "mi cielo", be ware of the context. Context includes (but is not limited to) mood, meaning, intonation, desire, will, expectation and history. It also includes the medium, time and place in which the message is delivered: a mere "I <3 u" in a SMS and saying "I love you" aloud on a dinner date are vastly different things. It might be that the word is used casually by someone who doesn't know the value of words or maybe that someone totally and completely disregards said power the same way most people disregard fairy tales, cautionary tales. Do not assign more value to their words than they do. The sky (that is, you) might not be as big as you think it is.
  • Warning #2: The sky is big, but is not necessarily Great. Some people marvel at the complex world that can only be seen in a microscope and they might see the changing colors of the sky as a distraction at best. Some people are not interested in Rayleigh scattering. The sky is up, but it doesn't mean that it's above everything else.
  • Warning #3: If you move far enough, you'll see something different. There is more than one sky.

Final warning by etouffee: There is more than one sky- and more than Three lies, of course.