Buffet of Asian Literature - Makan! Poetry Friday Reading Themes

Poetry Friday: The Benign Majesty of Tomatoes

poetry friday

Iphigene here.

I’m once again tasked to post a poem for today’s Poetry Friday (hosted by Jone at Check it Out). In line with my previous post on Neruda’s Ode to the Onion, today, I’m posting his Ode to the Tomato. This poem drew me further in with the phrase benign majesty.  It is Neruda’s ability to bring elegance in his poetry that had made me fall in love with his poems the moment I read them.


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12 comments on “Poetry Friday: The Benign Majesty of Tomatoes

  1. He says what I’ve always wanted to say about the tomato, but couldn’t find these words. My favorite line – “Light is halved like a tomato”


    • Hi Monica,
      Indeed. I feel the same way, except he seems to have a better way of doing it. That line you quoted is beautiful.


  2. Hi, Ladies! Neruda’s odes are so much fun to teach. My students love his focus on simple things, like a juicy tomato for lunch. Did you hear about the recently discovered poems? http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/jun/19/pablo-neruda-poems-20-unseen


    • Hi Laura,
      It’s wonderful that your students are getting exposed to Neruda. Oh…i haven’t heard of the discovered poems…now that’s something to look forward to.


  3. Mmmmm… perhaps not the best idea to read this right before dinner when I was hungry to start with! For me, the tastiest bit is “light is/ halved/ like/ a/ tomato,/ its juice/ runs/ through the street.”


  4. maryleehahn

    I just indulged in the guilty pleasure of plucking three small tomatoes from the countertop and eating them for breakfast!

    There are so many lines in the poem to love…so much truth about tomatoes…


    • Hi Marylee,
      Thanks for the visit. If anything, this odes are ‘forcing’ me to look at everything with a different eye.


  5. So many wonderful lines — the ones Monica and Michelle mentioned, “Star of earth,” “fiery color and cool completeness.”


  6. Everyone saying ‘I don’t have any good idea for a poem’ is procrastinating. This shows how everything can be a poem. Who could resist a crunchy juicy tomato?


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