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An Imaginary Affair is a collection of sensitive and sensuous poems for poets and non-poets who appreciate the challenges and intricacies of being human.
The poems touch on key human elements, such as love, desire, passion, memory, loss, and gratitude. The poet celebrates the joys, and pains inherent to a woman's heart, while honoring the wisdoms and tones of Neruda's poetry. Some of the epistolary poems are directed to Neruda in response to his riveting poems.
“In this intimate collection of poems, Diana Raab pays tribute to the sensual physicality of Pablo Neruda’s work and to her own real and invented lives. With unvarnished honesty, An Imaginary Affair celebrates a woman’s heart and mind through a handful of odes, epistolary poems, and the idea that memory and anticipation can sustain and nourish us; even drinking a glowing hot toddy is transformed into a meditation on how an ordinary act can awaken desire. Her unvarnished honesty gives equal attention to matters of mortality, where loss is lyrically considered (“…will you run from me / when trains sleep at their stations”), and also explored in the spirit of open curiosity (“How long does it take / for a pine casket to disintegrate / in this caving land…). These poems remind us that to be alive is to try and balance joy and lament, and how through this effort we more deeply inhabit the world and ourselves.” –Emma Trelles, author of Tropicalia and Poet Laureate of Santa Barbara
Read an Excerpt
Take my diamonds, bury my treasures
and burn my books, but never
take away your smile.
Don’t take back the carnation you picked
as a child, the baby food left on porcelain
plates or that golden light on everything
on the day you were born, son.
Your sadness—each day of it—
pools into the lining of me: those many worlds
on your brow and in your gaze’s shadow.
Let me tug them from you as you sleep
not far from the turbulent ocean:
such mystery and regret.
I smile at you.
You didn’t smile back then.
But you do, now.
I walk away, glowing.
About the Author:
Raab has written over 1000 articles and poems including her contributions to Psychology Today, Thrive Global, Wisdom Daily and many others. She has taught at UCLA Extension, the Santa Barbara's Writer's Conference, 1440 Multiversity, Hugo House and others.
Her chapbook, An Imaginary Affair: Poems Whispered to Neruda is written in response to his work.
Finishing Line Press
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