Yesterday, I wrote about the connection between wine and music, especially the literal connections, the ways that some producers use music as a muse for their winemaking. Today, I want to talk a little about poetry and wine.
Nobel Prize winning Chilean poet Pablo Neruda writes eloquently and abundantly about love. It's therefore not surprising that he also writes about wine. He begins his "Ode to Wine" like this:
wine with purple feet
or wine with topaz blood,
as a golden sword,
as lascivious velvet
It's difficult not to quote the whole poem, not only because it unrolls like a silky length of finely woven cloth but also because it's one of the finest evocations of the experience of drinking wine that I've ever read. You can go here
to read the whole thing (and it's even better in its original Spanish
Reading this poem, I'm struck by the way that Neruda makes the ineffable, expressible drinking of wine known. "Wine," he writes, "Stirs the spring, happiness/bursts through the earth like a plant/walls crumble." When you drink wine with people, you form bonds with them. It's not just that in wine there is truth; it's that in wine there is connection. The world is displaced just enough to see things differently, to loosen the constraints of consciousness, to see the texture of things, and to speak with bravery.
Today, I'm proud to present three wines, each very different, that could have inspired Neruda's poem. Velvety and soft, Begali's Amarone hangs in the mouth with magical weight. It's like drinking liquid night. Full and quickening as the August sun, Angelo Gaja's Gaia and Rey makes you grateful for its lusciousness. And rare, indefinable and disorienting as Neruda's poem itself, Ferrari's Solaria Jonica feels like an epiphany.
"Drink it," Neruda says in his poem's closing, "and remember in every drop of gold, in every topaz glass, in every purple ladle, that autumn labored to fill the vessel with wine." Drink one of these wines with someone and share the poetry. Make some memories. And, above all, enjoy the moment, however long it lasts.