summoned by

And it was at that age…Poetry arrived
in search of me. I didn’t know, I didn’t know where
it came from, from winter or a river.
I don’t know how or when,
no, they were not voices, they were not
words, nor silence,
but from a street I was summoned,
from the branches of night,
abruptly from the others,
among violent fires
or returning alone,
there I was without a face
and it touched me.

—Pablo Neruda, “Poetry,”
Translated by W.S. Merwin

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