Translations: Neruda's "Resurrecciones"


If someday I live again
nothing would change
because my failed birth
would play out again too.
and I'd come out with another brain
singing the same tune.

And that’s why, if it comes to pass,
if by some Hindu destiny
I find myself forced again to be born,
I don’t want to be an elephant,  
or a rickety camel, 
but a modest lobster,
A red speck in the sea.    

I want to make the same mistakes
in the frigid water:
shaken by the waves like I was by time
and devoured by the fangs of the abyss,
Just as I was caught between the black teeth of literature.    

To walk with copper antennas
along antarctic sands    
lining the coast where I had loved and lived,    
sliding with a shiver    
between frightened seaweed,    
surviving under the fish
my hard shell hiding    
my complex structure,
Just as a I survived    
under the sorrows of the earth.  

— Pablo Neruda