Loyal But Not Faithful

In honor of voyages to the Andes, I humbly submit a poem about Pablo Neruda’s funeral, as I understand it from Adam Feinstein’s strong biography.

Loyal But Not Faithful

Loyal but not faithful
As a drinking vessel
Shipped across political lines
Changing hands, without an owner
Its shared history remembered to all
By its unforced presence
Long after the death of its gifter.

“Present!” I shout,
Tears flooding.
Present at your funeral.
Present in my nakedness before
The world.
Your house, built upon rock
Destroyed
Present.

There was always blood
And wine
Each endlessly offered
As the present.

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